Toxic Racism Against Japan Since the March 11 Disaster (Part3)

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In Part 1, we looked at how America does not seem to be over the Pearl Harbor attacks. In Part 2, we saw that almost 4 out of 10 Americans agree with the disturbing internet troll known as “Tamtampamela,” who said that the earthquake and tsunami in Japan were a result of God’s intervention. That is an alarmingly high number of idiots. But the U.S. does not exactly have a monopoly on bigotry, and there are many good Americans who fight back against discrimination. So now, let’s look at the fair way to consider the filth that has been spewing outside of America.

To read all three parts of this series on a single post, click here.

Only in America?

No, not all of the discrimination is from the “Greatest Country in the World.” Here’s an example of someone from Australia, Elle Fabri, who apparently didn’t care about the tsunami whatsoever, and makes an incredibly stupid and racist comment about how Japanese people all look alike. Fabri’s friend “Tara” was evidently the only one who demonstrated that she’s not a brainless racist.

And apparently there’s a lot of idiocy that occurred during soccer. Half a year after the disaster, a routine Belgian soccer match was forced to halt for a few minutes because of the unexpected discrimination from fans in the stands. As the Associated Foreign Press reports:

The Belgian top-flight encounter between Germinal Beerschot and Lierse on Friday was halted by the referee after Lierse goalkeeper Eiji Kawashima was taunted with chants about the Fukushima disaster.

Lierse had gone a goal up when visiting Beerschot fans threw a projectile in the direction of Japanese international ‘keeper Kawashima before insulting him with chants of “Kawashima-Fukushima! Kawashima-Fukushima!” the Belga agency reported.

Following protests by Kawashima, the referee decided to bring play to a halt for several minutes until order was restored.

The match ended in a 1-1 draw, but Kawashima, 28, left the pitch at full-time in tears, and spoke of his anger at the chants. “I am prepared to forget about a lot of things, but not that. It is not remotely funny,” he said.

The following video shows what happened. Skip to 5 minutes to see the incident:

It’s disconcerting to know that this insensitive disregard can reach such a level of unprofessionalism outside of the States as well, but it seems that the majority of racism against Japan is from Americans. In fact, another moment of awful discrimination on the soccer field was seen – or heard, rather – in a friendly match between U.S. and Argentina, right after the earthquake.

The players on the field stood for a moment of silence, after the announcer asked for everyone in the stands to stand up, saying “join us in a show of support for our friends in Japan.” It was a very nice thing for them to do. …But then you hear a male voice from the stands shout “USA!” followed soon by “KONICHIWA BITCHES!” What a disrespectful demonstration of what America has become. You would never see a Japanese person yell something like that in a moment of silence for an American tragedy. Ever. The video is below:

And let’s not forget the horrible racism – as well as sexism – that went on in America when Japan played (and then beat) America in the finals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Outside the realm of sports, there were also many Koreans angry about Korea sending help to Japan, as well as gloating about the financial gain Korea would get because of the tsunami in Japan.

Looking into the endless threads of hate online, I wonder if this American hatred is more a reflection of American republicanism, or Christian conservative values in general, rather than the greater American population. It’s hard to tell, but I get this feeling when I see things like these loads of hateful Facebook comments, such as one by Shawn Rodriguez, who said “WTF japan attacked pearl harbor and we kicked their ass but why does this stupid ass president want to help them.” I would only guess that Obama wants to help because… it’s simply the right thing to do. But then again, this would be a point that American republicans probably would find hard to comprehend. After all, at a recent republican debate, the crowd actually boo’d presidential candidate Ron Paul for proposing the Golden Rule. Really. The rule is so golden that it’s written with capital letters; but I digress.

Concluding Thoughts

Let’s Be Fair to America

To be honest, the most perplexing thing about this phenomenon is why Americans made it about themselves at all. Why is it that Americans can’t even watch an event that has absolutely nothing to do with them without pissing the rest of the world off? If there weren’t so many American idiots with access to the internet, there wouldn’t be such a robust stereotype that Americans are idiots.

Intelligent, thoughtful, and friendly Americans (i.e., the majority) are having a very hard time defending their national image because the anecdotes of this minority of fools are being heard far too loudly. This is why I hesitated to write this article… I didn’t want to draw attention to them. But now I think that the best way to stop this nonsense is to expose them for what they willingly and knowingly said. People ought to know that they can be held accountable for their actions.

There was even a case of a blogger, Maud Newton, creating a false rumor that a CNN reporter made a joke about Japan and Godzilla on TV, which was unfortunately repeated over and over. So hopefully people like Newton, in addition to Sulkin, Gottfried, Wallace, and Boehm, who were all basically held accountable, will be deterred from such behavior in the future.

And in terms of war-related anti-Japanese sentiments, I believe that there is a problem. For the youth who seem to so passionately remember the horrors of Pearl Harbor, they seem to be totally oblivious to the fact that the atomic bomb was far more destructive. In fact, many Americans have a “you’re welcome” attitude towards it, because it resulted in the end of the war. I understand the logic, but I think there is a problem when the only history you remember and the only politics you choose to acknowledge are the ones in which you are the victim. If more Americans thought that way, America and Russia probably would have blown each other to smithereens long ago. Luckily, not every American is so foolish.

In fact, I encourage anyone who may come away with new-found anti-American sentiments to read my article on the recent polling results regarding Japan’s opinion of the U.S.. I wrote about America’s profound generosity with their aid relief to help Japan, as well as the help they provided in terms of military and nuclear experts from bases in Japan and from America itself.

The Bottom Line

I love the United States. In fact I don’t have any strong negative feelings towards any country (except North Korea, fuck them). And I certainly don’t have anything against Americans any more than I have against the stupidity, ignorance, and intolerance from any other nation, as anyone who reads my blog should know. But I decided to take all the sources I accumulated from the past year on racism about Japan, and I was surprised to see that almost all of it was from the States.

But you should know that there is selection bias here – I’m blogging in English, so who knows what others have said in other languages? Perhaps there is an equivalent degree of bigotry in many other countries – I wouldn’t be surprised to see that coming from many of the Eastern Asian countries, especially China, nearby.

Regardless of the people who appear trolling through message boards, social networks, and on Youtube, the bottom line is that Japan loves America; and I just hope America loves Japan.

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One Response to Toxic Racism Against Japan Since the March 11 Disaster (Part3)

  1. 6 8 10 says:

    It’s been a while since I’ve seen it, but there was a website out there that had a huge collection of iditotic reactions in the aftermath of the quake that were posted on facebook. It may have been at http://failbook.failblog.org/. Regardless of where it was, it made me sad for the state of humanity in general, not just that of the idiot portion of the U.S.

    I sometimes wonder how some people can have the brain power to be able to use the internet, facebook, etc, and still be dumb enough to spew some of their crap, and the U.S. doesn’t have a monopoly on that. I’ve on occasion had to do my best to ignore the extremist right-wing crazies in Japan as they blast their vile speeches over loudspeakers outside the station, or shake my head when, yet again, relations between China and Japan are showing signs of friction over things (or the denial of things) that happened in World War II. Or sit befuddled by race riots in Australia, Neo-Nazi demonstrations in Germany, and hearing some Brits lecture with superiority about racism in America while turning a blind eye to the treatment of the Indian and Pakistani population of England. It’s everywhere. At least it’s not everyone- for instance, there are many Japanese people who shake their heads in wonder at the right-wing extremists.

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