the nikku

reflecting on ESL/EFL and its relation to faith

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The World and the Virginia Shooting

Ever wonder how the rest of the world sees American school shootings? Well, here a few repeated comments I've heard in Japan:

"America is a very dangerous place."

"Does everyone have a gun in America?" - Guns are illegal in Japan, period. Even possession of a single bullet is illegal. Only Yakuza gangsters have guns, and they get them from the black market.

"Why do people need guns in America?" Other than hunting, I have no answer for this one. And I have yet to meet anyone who goes hunting in Japan.

"If I go to America, I am afraid of discrimination." This one I heard a lot even before the shooting. It's important to note that the shooter was a poor Korean immigrant, whose parents never made it out of poverty in the more than 15 years he lived in America.

I think this shooting is a sign of the growing gap between rich and poor in America, and the ignorance of the general public towards the plight of foreigners. Foreigners whom we welcome to our country.

For another opinion from Japan, see the Japan Times.

4 Comments:

Blogger Jess said...

I've heard a lot of the same stuff recently...I never realized that guns weren't allowed here. It makes sense though...

4/25/2007 10:01 PM  
Blogger darin said...

Nick,
I definitely agree that there is an ignorance of general public towards the plight of foreigners. Sadly, though, that plight often is correlated with crime (through some form or fashion) and as soon as that happens, Americans jump all over immigrants as criminals, not poverty-stricken people. And at that point, in the eyes of the American public, those folks are no longer welcome here.

"There's the door," we say on their way out, while never quite really welcoming them on the way in. Sad.

4/26/2007 2:31 AM  
Blogger Lizeo said...

it's sobering to hear some of the world's outlook on violence, america, race and so on.

The world is a dangerous place, getting worse daily.

How bad will it get? How segregated, biased, afraid and distrustful will we get as humans?

How many changes in our so-called laws will occur in order to try and make right a wrong?

Will it all be enough?

5/08/2007 1:08 AM  
Anonymous Ken said...

Guns are illegal in Japan, period. Even possession of a single bullet is illegal. Only Yakuza gangsters have guns, and they get them from the black market.

I guess that's sort of true. If you mean handguns, yes, they are illegal. But it's not only the Yaks who have them, the police have them as well.

Rifles and rifle ammunition are perfectly legal for a Japanese citizen to own. They have to be properly licensed and the rifles have to be stored in a case that is locked at all times, but they are legal.

5/18/2007 2:07 AM  

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