American Teacher Exposes Lingering Racism in Japan
Today’s post is in support of our friend Miki Dezaki, a Japanese-American currently living and teaching in Japan. Miki has been in Okinawa since 2007, and has made some videos documenting various elements of Japanese culture from his unique perspective (usually with a humorous kick).
Recently, he made a video chronicling the racism that exists in Japan even today, and how the Japanese themselves are mostly oblivious to it. While the video is in fact a thoughtful analysis rooted in fact and supporting evidence, Miki did not expect that the video would cause the stir that it did, in this case, from the loud, vocal and right-wing netouyou.
Some extremists from this group were so outraged that they began hurling death threats at Miki, and attacking him through his various social media presences online. Armed with the information they could find there, they infiltrated his personal life, tracking down his superiors at school, the school board, and even local government to demand that he remove the video and stop spreading his message. Ironically, that fact alone seems to reaffirm Miki’s original “controversial” claim that racism does still exist in Japan.
“Some Japanese guys found out which school I used to work at and now, I am being pressured to take down the ‘Racism in Japan’ video,” Dezaki posted on Reddit. “I’m not really sure what to do at this point. I don’t want to take down the video because I don’t believe I did anything wrong, and I don’t believe in giving into bullies who try to censor every taboo topic in Japan. What do you guys think?”
You can read more about Miki and his video in a recent Washington Post article here. In the meantime, we at Initial Descent want to express our support for Miki and wish him well as he continues to try to make the country he loves a better place through education.
You can also watch the original video that caused this stir below:
He has also released a follow-up, which can be accessed here.