Tackle embedded racism before it chokes Japan | The Japan Times

According to this article by the Japan Times, Japan’s society and government are permeated by a narrative that says people must “look Japanese” before they can expect equal treatment in society.

Source: Tackle embedded racism before it chokes Japan | The Japan Times

This is a detailed look at the culture of embedded racism in Japan.

So why is embedded racism a more important and urgent issue in Japan?

Simply, Japan’s population is aging quickly and its young are not having as many children. This means that with fewer and older people the economy of Japan will decay quickly too. Most significantly for Japan’s right-wing government, Japan will lose power with her aging society.

It is obvious to any outsider that Japan desperately needs immigration to augment it society. But Japan’s embedded racism will make it difficult for the country to welcome foreigners. Similarly, foreigners will be wary of committing the time to learn the language and putting their savings into Japanese pensions where they will be treated as second class citizens.

Surely, if Japanese society does not embrace cultural change, then we’ll see Japan importance in the world rapidly diminish in the next fifty years?



One response

  1. Dr Alf puts the situation in Japan very well.

    They see themselves as infinitely superior to everyone else on the planet but lack the positioning on the world stage to give this thought any effect. There is a school of thought from the monk Nichiren that says that Japan is secretly at war with Christianity and Islam and will one day vanquish them.

    We have, of course, come to see throughout the world that these sorts of thoughts are not particularly Japanese. The Chinese see many Western leaders as “children playing in a sandpit” and talk about a doctrine called the “Blending of the 5 colours”, which they think will put them in the driving seat. Germany still has people in it who see themselves as part of a “Master race”. Meanwhile, the British once said that “God was an Englishman”.

    Japan has been eclipsed by China and America economically and militarily and has an ageing population. It has not yet fully defined its role in the world, although under Abe they would like to be more militaristic. They, like many people in the UK, have yet to grasp the truth of the life which is that there is no monopoly on wisdom and that different countries and peoples are experts in particular fields and that we should learn from each other. Thus reclaiming land from the sea is the expert area for the Dutch, great art, fashion and design, Italy, engineering Germany, great marketing and sales ideas America, Singapore,efficient governance and well thought out policies, the UK, banking and financial services etc, etc.

    Japan could do with more innovation and less rigidity, so it needs to encourage migration from a country it can learn from.

    Singapore within the confines of its immigration policy wanted more innovation and creativity, so they allowed bright Westerners to work there and raised the pay of their MPs so that their legislature would have the brightest people in the world.

    Japan needs to overcome its fear and loathing of “gaijin” which literally means something like “wog”, swallow its pride and do something similar.

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