Yes, you’re reading the title correctly.
I know it’s been several months since the Tsunami has passed and with it, about 20,000 people died. What was astonishing was not only the scale of the disaster but the sort of responses that came from it.
That’s about five times as many American troops have died in Afghanistan and Iraq. And overnight instead of over the span of about ten years.
But the sort of reaction that followed were silly jokes, a seeming lack of awareness (very few people talked about it, and if they did, often in joke form) and lack of any sense of concern. Even in the news there were smart-ass pundits going “don’t donate money to Japan.” Why not? Their national debt is about twice their GDP! I think they’re going to need some help.
So it can’t be about socio-economic disparities. Japan is a first world country that, in terms of standard of living, puts pretty much the rest of the world to shame.
It can’t be that they’re too obscure. Who in the world doesn’t know Japan? Okay, so if a disaster hit New Caledonia and people didn’t know much about it, it would make *some* sense (however unfortunate) because few people even know such a country exists. But this is Japan.
It’s pretty much got to be it because I can’t think of much else. It’s not that they’re a poor and desolate country in which disasters and wars happen all the time. It’s not because they’re unknown and it’s not like it’s not been all over the news. I suppose it’s because whereas it is too controversial to be racist against black people, some folks are kinda “okay” to be racist against. Yes… the “safe” people to be racist against.
That’s right, during the USA-Argentina friendly soccer match, a douche bag in the stands screamed “Konichiwa Bitches” during the moment of silence in respect for the dead. I suppose the next time news hits Japan about a roadside bomb that kills several American troops they now have all the right to laugh their asses off. The fact that the guy who filmed this laughed doesn’t help much either.
Here’s a better video of the same incident:
As for other Asians who go “Oh, I don’t care about Japan,” consider this: to these folks, Asians are all the same. If this disaster happened in your country, they would have had the same sort of reaction. They’d either not care about it, not know about it, or they’ll make jokes about it. After all, what’s 20,000 dead gooks when five people in Europe are severely injured in a train accident, right?
– Ryoga has spoken.