Sunday, 15 December 2013
Free! Nelson Mandela (1918 - 2013)
As the world mourns the passing of a giant, there are some facts to be considered.
1) The next Nelson Mandela will not be born in Japan. The Ministry of Education is doing an extremely good job of indoctrinating youth in the most valuable element of Japanese society; not honesty, not compassion, but conformity. The nation is full of teenagers who answer comprehension questions in their English language textbooks on Mandela, and Mahatma Ghandi, and Martin Luther King, and they have absolutely no understanding of the values that those individuals represent.
2) Nelson Mandela's legacy includes violence as well as nonviolence. In the Fifties, in his famous "No Easy Walk to Freedom" speech, he rejected the ANC's policy of non-violent protests and strikes. In the early Sixties, after the Sharpetown massacre, Mandela set up the armed militant wing of the ANC, Umkhonto we Sizwe (Spear of the Nation).
So when Shinzo Abe's bully boys stop you on the street and knock on your door and ask for your gaijin card, should we respond with violence?
What would Nelson say?
3) If Japan cannot produce a social reformer fit to be compared with Mandela, how will reform occur? The answer is, the Government want to make sure that change does not occur, because they want everyone to stay in their places, keep fiddling with their smartphones, shut up and do nothing. The link below will take you to an excellent article by Michael Hoffman in today's Japan Times. In it, he mentions one proverb from the late Tokugawa period, circa 1800 -1850;
"Peasants are like sesame seeds. The harder you squeeze them, the more they give."
Yes, that really sums up what Prime Minister Abe thinks about you.
Michael Hoffman's article here
4) Hoffman's article also mentions the undeniable fact that because of the traditionally fierce protection of the status quo, every major social change in Japan has come from outside. The feudal period was brought to an end by Commodore Perry and the Black Ships. The Fascist period was brought to an end by Franklin D Roosevelt, Enola Gay, and General MacArthur, among others. Who will be the next force to wade into Japan and kick Abe to the curb?
Could it be you?
We are Excalibur. You will hear from us again soon.