Sensato's past comments

  • 5


    Because the cause of Akitaya's death was drowning and Gumo admitted to dumping her body in the bay, it seems like the prosecutors could have easily added significantly to his prison sentence with a negligent homicide charge at the very least, in addition to the time Gumo will do for disposal of her body (which was still alive when he disposed of it). Sure Gumo could claim that she attempted suicide, but obviously being his submerging her in the bay is what killed her.

    This 15-month charge is an insult to Akitaya and her family. RIP Mariko Akitaya.

    Posted in: American man gets 18 months for dumping woman's body in bay

  • 3


    Shall we turn this convenient spotlight on Christianity? Didn't think so.


    Most of us on this thread have referred to Christianity as well, even though the quote refers to Shintoism only.

    So far, of the seven comments, five (yours included) have referred either to Christianity (the church) or religion in general which includes Christianity. All religions, including Shinto, Christianity and Islam tend to produce evil outcomes when conjoined with the state (and yes, some more than others).

    However, Shintoism is on the radar at the moment because we now have Abe thinking it is a great idea to bring the world leaders to Ise Shrine, which still remains symbolic of Japan's imperial past and ethnocentric supremacist views. And to think, Abe has engineered the stop off to Ise Shrine on the very same occasion as Obama's historic visit to Hiroshima. Tacky at best, insidious at worst.

    Can you imagine if, for instance, a U.S. president put a visit to a church of a xenophobic Christian denomination on an itinerary of world leaders? (rhetorical question) I for one would be outraged and embarrassed.

    Posted in: There’s no doubt that Shinto was used by the government during the war. But is there a religion that has not been used as a reason for fighting? Shrines in themselves are not aggressive.

  • 6


    can't you imagine throwing your briefcase, or batting with the umbrella at least to distract the freak? Just recording on a phone is pathetic...


    Thank you @Reckless. I couldn't agree more.

    Posted in: Stabbed Japanese pop idol called police for help during attack

  • 10


    When there is someone running amok with a knife it is not so easy to be a hero.


    I somewhat agree, and I'm cowardly enough that I am pretty sure I wouldn't have engaged the guy in hand-to-hand combat. Still, I would have at least made him aware of my presence to the extent that he would have to stop doing harm to the girl, even if that meant putting myself at risk to some degree.

    I've been in a number of situations in Tokyo where bystanders do absolutely nothing to help a person in distress, even in situations where no danger is involved. This incident brings back some of those memories.

    Posted in: Stabbed Japanese pop idol called police for help during attack

  • 3


    bed-sharing in a room

    Japan has no shortage of euphemisms (as I roll my eyes), but "bed-sharing in a room" has got to be one of the more egregious ones.

    "Bed sharing in a room" was most likely used in this article as the translation for "soi-ne" (添い寝) services, where prices typically start roughly at around Y5,000 ($50) to sleep next to a girl for 30 minutes. A google search of the term "添い寝" in conjunction with "JK" (high school girl) brings up scores of these barely legal "JK businesses."

    For instance, this one called "Milky Rolik" was toward the top of the search results. It claims to be the Akihabara's number one "JK rifure" parlor. Here is a listing of the high school girls supposedly on today's menu:

    Posted in: Panel calls for penalties for dating services using schoolgirls

  • 9


    But is there a religion that has not been used as a reason for fighting?

    No, there isn't. That's one reason religion needs to be kept out of government — separation of church/shrine and state. And that's one reason Abe needs to stop these semi-official/offical visits to Yasukuni, stop sending his wife there, and stop sending gifts there.

    Shrines in themselves are not aggressive.

    Obviously Shinto PR frontman Iwashi let Yasukuni and its Yushukan war glorification museum slip his mind when he made that statement. Certain shrines are aggressive, just as certain mosques are aggressive, and certain churches are aggressive.

    Posted in: There’s no doubt that Shinto was used by the government during the war. But is there a religion that has not been used as a reason for fighting? Shrines in themselves are not aggressive.

  • 0


    Obviously there was at least one witness to this (the person who called the police), and I assume there were other bystanders. Didn't anybody step in to lend a hand, and at least try to distract the perpetrator?

    Sadly, Good Samaritans who are willing to get involved and help others in distress seem to be almost non-existent in Tokyo.

    Posted in: Stabbed Japanese pop idol called police for help during attack

  • 4


    Mayu Uchida... said she cried when she heard survivors recount their memories on a school trip to Hiroshima...“[Obama] could also suggest, promoting opportunities for more Americans to visit Hiroshima, or to hear the story of Hiroshima,” the 18-year-old said.

    The human interest/inspirational "Mayu Uchida the now enlightened high school student" angle of this story is something I keep thinking about. This narrative has become a tried and true formulaic cliche in news about Hiroshima, and is one that I have seen countless times in relation to Hiroshima during my years in Japan.

    The story is invariably one where a previously naive high school girl (almost always a girl) learns about Hiroshima and becomes forever more enlightened to the suffering of the victims in Japan, and consequently she earns everyone's approval, acceptance and admiration for her newfound empathy. The problem is, exchange the word "Hiroshima" for "Unit 731," "sex slaves" or any other IJA atrocity, and this same girl would be shunned. Her shedding tears over those victims would bring nothing but silence, rejection and scorn from many of her teachers, classmates and society at large.

    Posted in: Obama's Hiroshima visit stirs differing views across Pacific

  • 8


    ...few suggest hearing the stories of Japan's victims because for various reasons they are barely aware of them.

    All well said, @Moonraker. I have had many of the same experiences, and this is what has really turned me off regarding the function of the "peace museums" in Japan, and the role they have come to play in feeding the nation's victim mentality. Yes, I feel terrible for the victims of Hiroshima (and equally so for those from all nations who suffered because of the war), but I am appalled at how the site has been hijacked by nationalists in Japan.

    One Tokyo high school student has a suggestion. Mayu Uchida... said she cried when she heard survivors recount their memories on a school trip to Hiroshima

    This is indicative of where the problem lies. Although Mayu has shed tears for the many who suffered in Hiroshima (as have so many other Japanese students who have visited Hiroshima on school-organized field trips), something tells me that she probably has yet to shed tears for the much higher number of non-Japanese people who suffered at the hands of the IJA.

    Japan's education ministry actively prevents students from being taught about atrocities committed by Japan because they fear that doing so would harm their confidence and pride in being Japanese, but on the flip side encourages ample time spent beyond history classes in teaching students about the suffering Japan has endured at the hands of others. This is not a good recipe for instilling a healthy and honest view of history.

    Posted in: Obama's Hiroshima visit stirs differing views across Pacific

  • 8


    However, I think Japan should stop hiding behind the US flag.


    I agree with you there.

    Japan's hosting of the bases creates an obvious moral hazard which harms both Japan and the U.S. in that it emboldens Japan's nationalists to act more provocatively, and less diplomatically, toward its neighbors than they would otherwise, without fear of retribution. For instance, I sincerely doubt that former Tokyo Governor Ishihara would have stirred the pot with the Senkaku Islands issue back in 2012 without having the U.S. military close at hand.

    Also, the U.S. servicemen and servicewomen are treated like mercenaries here whose role is to sacrifice their lives for Japan if need be, so that Japan's young adults don't have to. Removing the bases would help bring about a healthier U.S.-Japan bilateral relationship.

    Posted in: Would you like to see U.S. military forces leave Okinawa?

  • 3


    Perhaps Japan should ban all Americans until their country's representatives can figure out what is going on. Trump supporters, at least, would certainly understand the sentiment.


    Good one — and I'm saying that as an American who sincerely hopes that ban doesn't take effect, and who for the most part admires our men and women in uniform (but not necessarily the military/government complex itself).

    Let me take @Laguna's Trumpism one step further, with some word replacement ("U.S. military" instead of "Mexico," etc.) There is definitely a Japanese Donald Trump out there saying these very same words.

    "When [the U.S. military] sends its people, they’re not sending their best. They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to [citizens of Okinawa] and they tell us what we’re getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They’re sending us not the right people."

    Posted in: Massive rally planned in Okinawa to protest woman's murder

  • 5


    “Part of the subtext is telling this and future Japanese leaders that ‘If I can go to Hiroshima and take flak for it at home, you can certainly do a little more to own up to what Japan did...”

    This sounds nice in theory, but the actual outcome will be a far cry from this. His visit will feed into the agenda of Abe and the other nationalists, and will be construed by much of Japan's mainstream population as Obama's acceptance of the Japan as victim not aggressor narrative.

    “Japanese nationalists will declare vindication of the empire and of the Japanese people, even if the president insists we are all culpable for war and its effects"

    As for the government's agenda...

    "Somehow, [the Japanese government is] trying to sanitise Japanese war conduct,” said Hiroshima historian Yuki Tanaka.

    Here, historian Tanaka is somewhere close to the mark, abeit what she said is a gross understatement. I would reword what she said as, "Clearly, the Japanese government is sanitizing and glorifying Japanese war conduct."

    The government's narrative is more along the lines of Japan having liberated the countries it occupied and improving those countries by introducing Japanese rule of law, education and infrastructure, and that now those countries are horribly ungrateful in not recognizing Japan's occupation as benevolent.

    Posted in: Obama's Hiroshima visit looks to future amid charges of selective amnesia

  • 1


    Critics argue that by not apologising, Obama will allow Japan to stick to the narrative that paints it as a victim.

    It seems even more likely to me that an apology by Obama would allow Japan to stick to its victim narrative.

    "I thought it was a good time for me to reflect on the nature of war. Part of my goal is to recognise that innocent people caught in war can suffer tremendously,” [Obama] said.

    Although I agree with Obama here, I also realize that by only visiting Hiroshima Obama is reinforcing the Abe regime's victim agenda of Japan as a benevolent occupier that ended up suffering more than those it occupied. In the spirit of recognizing that innocent people suffer tremendously in war, he should also be visiting other sites in Japan where victims suffered, which should include a number of sites where non-Japanese victims suffered at the hands of the IJA and former IJA sites that were the source of suffering.

    These sites could include the site where the former Unit 731 was located in Shinjuku, former chemical/biological weapons facilities in Japan, sites in Japan were sex slavery took place, and locations in Japan where slave labor was used.

    Posted in: Obama says Hiroshima visit will emphasise current U.S. ties with Japan

  • 15


    The widespread use of surgical masks in Japan would make this sort of crime easy to perpetrate here. A criminal would certainly turn heads if he/she were to withdraw money wearing that sort of mask in most other countries.

    Posted in: Y1.4 bil stolen from 1,400 convenience store ATMs across Japan

  • 2


    So if people die by a knife, it's ok?


    Once again, you are completely missing the point, but I do realize it seems obvious to many people, but not to everyone.

    If a lunatic were hell bent on ending my life or the lives of as many people as possible in a crowded area, but I had a choice as to whether he/she had a knife or a gun, I think it is fairly obvious what my choice would be given my odds of survival pitted against either weapon.

    There is no shortage of knife murders, suicides and accidental killings in the U.S., but for obvious reasons the numbers pale in comparison to those of murders, suicides and accidental killings involving guns.

    Posted in: Gun rights group NRA endorses Trump for president

  • 3


    Osaki ni shitsurei shimasu. (I’m sorry for rudely leaving before you [at work])

    I think "I'll be rude and leave first" is more accurate.

    I would tend to translate "shitsurei shimasu" as "excuse me" in most contexts, and usually not "I am sorry" (as @Strangerland wrote).

    So I would translate the entire phrase as "Excuse me for leaving ahead of you," or in the spirit of the rule that translator's should "translate what is said, not how it is said," I would translate it as "Excuse me but I'm leaving (heading home) now."

    Posted in: Say sayonara to 'sayonara' – 70% of Japanese don’t use this word for goodbye anymore

  • 1


    Of course they (the NRA) support letting people carry guns in schools, bars, churches, and stores; but not in NRA conventions.


    Personally, I am against letting people carry guns in schools, bars, churches and stores, but I'm all for letting people carry guns at all NRA events and offices. That would be great.

    I'm particularly for letting people carry guns at Donald Trump rallies, especially now that he has the coveted NRA endorsement.

    As it now stands, the taxpayer spends heavily for Trump's secret service squad. I'm all for starting a petition to enable Trump to save the taxpayer some money by replacing his secret service protection with a well-armed Trump-supporter citizen "good guys with guns" militia, in the true spirit of the 2nd Amendment. This would be a great way for NRA/Trumpeters to demonstrate how "guns save lives" (though some might argue that "guns don't save lives, people save lives). Whatever could go wrong?

    I wonder if there might be any Trump supporting well-armed militia, unfettered access to gun advocates out there who would like to get this petition started, and get the ball rolling. I'll sign.

    Posted in: Gun rights group NRA endorses Trump for president

  • 8


    Here is Ishihara’s juciest quote from the FCCJ press conference (in my opinion). I couldn't believe he said it.

    Upon being asked essentially, "why do you think it is necessary to bring about China's collapse/overthrow?" he replied "I want it to collapse because I hate that country" (「なぜ崩壊させなければいけないのか」と質問されると、「私が中国崩壊され、嫌いだから、あの国が」返事。). That is quintessential Ishihara at his best — always the diplomat.

    Ishihara's remark follows on his 'advice' on what the U.S. can do to engineer China's downfall, and following a question by a reporter from Hong Kong Phoenix TV asking why it is necessary to take China down. His remark starts at the 1:21:05 mark:

    Posted in: A-bomb survivors want Obama to meet them, apologize in Hiroshima

  • 8


    In yesterday's FCCJ press conference with Shintaro Ishihara (former mayor/governor of Tokyo) and Shizuka Kamei, the two also spoke extensively about the prospect of a Trump presidency, America's role as the world's policeman, long rambling regarding the long history of world hegemony by the white race (Ishihara), harebrained theories about world dominance (Ishihara), Japan's superiority when it comes to winning Nobel Prizes and more juicy tidbits of wisdom.

    This is the best of Japan's right wing ultra-nationalist establishment (sarcasm). I pity the interpreter here. She did an outstanding job.

    Here is the footage of the complete FCCJ press conference with Shintaro Ishihara and Shizuka Kamei (English & Japanese, 1hr 30mn) Kamei's statement on the atomic bombs starts at the 32h 47sec mark:

    Posted in: A-bomb survivors want Obama to meet them, apologize in Hiroshima

  • 7


    I read on these very pages that there was no apology expected.


    First they got Obama to agree to the visit amid widespread claims that nobody was seeking an apology, which incidentally was echoed by certain people posting on this website. Now it just so happens to turn out that people connected with the peace museum are publicly seeking an apology. There is definitely some bait and switch going on here. Sneaky tactics.

    Harold Agnew (now deceased), who flew as a scientific observer on the Hiroshima bombing mission, visited Hiroshima and was pretty much ambushed by two Hiroshima survivors demanding an apology, which he did not give. The incident was by Japan's TBS Television in a documentary roughly translated as "a man who developed and dropped the atomic bomb visits Hiroshima for the first time" (原爆を開発・投下した男初の広島...).

    Here is the documentary (9' 43", English/Japanese subtitles). The apology part starts from the 6' 45" mark:

    Posted in: A-bomb survivors want Obama to meet them, apologize in Hiroshima


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