I remember well being the “ugly American businesswoman” with no social graces, apologizing profusely for grabbing my unwrapped packages at the checkout counter of a top Tokyo department store. Exhibiting supreme patience as the shop girl exquisitely tied gorgeous ribbons around each of my purchases, I couldn’t stand still one moment longer.
I fled the scene, with naked gifts fully exposed in the shopping bag. Goodness knows that those perfectly angelic Japanese shop girls thought of me.
In back-to-back posts, we have a reminder that the Japanese, fuelers of the world’s second largest economy, are not perfect, in spite of their exquisitely wrapped gifts.
I doubt there’s one Japanese woman on the Forbes 100 Most Powerful Women in the World list (see RedTracker 8-25-09), given the UN’s Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women recent ranking of Japan as 54th among the nations of the world, in terms of gender equality. (See Beyond the Veil, Aug. 21, 2009).
The blatently tortuous, demeaning pornography of Japanese women, under the guise of eroticism, has always disturbed me. (I support eroticism.)
A Whale of a Conscience Issue
ForeignPolicy.com reports that dolphins aren’t the only marine mammals that are in trouble in Japan.But the story and photos are only focused on whales and dolphins. These are the most graphic photos I’ve ever seen of slaughtered whales and dolphins.
The trailer to the blistering film documentary “The Cove” is a tremendous pause for thought, when we speak of the advancement of civilization. This is my own point in a recent journal essay on the erosion of civilization, at the hands of men.
Remarkably, “The Cove” reports that during the Greek era, it was punishable by death to harm a dolphin. PBS picks up this story on a Frontline expose: man & marine mammals: dolphins in ancient mythology. Anne
The Cove Trailer
More reading for whale lovers, Whales face dangers from ships in Santa Barbara Channel via LATimes.
Major update: How Filmmakers Used Spy Tech to Catch Dolphin Slaughter via Wired Science