Tokyo Rainbow Pride Parade Aims To Raise Diversity Awareness
Some 2,500 people marched in a gay pride parade in Tokyo on Sunday, vowing to transform a low-profile campaign for the rights of sexual minorities into a major movement in Japan.
The crowd, mainly from the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community, as well as their supporters and sex workers, paraded through the capital’s entertainment and shopping district of Shibuya.
Waving rainbow-coloured flags and banners, foreign and Japanese campaigners marched in colourful carnival and samurai warrior outfits.
It was the first parade organised by Tokyo Rainbow Pride, a private organisation formed last year which aims to support the rights of sexual minorities.
“Compared with that of New York or London, Japan’s awareness of sexual minorities is quite low,” said Sayaka Kato, a spokeswoman for the organisation.
“I’m afraid Japan has yet to have a culture of accepting diversity.”
The group hopes to stage a gay pride parade with 50,000 participants within the next five years by expanding its networks among not only Japanese but foreign residents.
Wataru Ishizaka, 35, who as an openly gay politician in Japan is a rarity, noted that a number of sexual minorities in the country still hesitate to take part in events in support of LGBT rights for fear of discrimination.
“Japanese sexual minorities are still concerned about their exposure to the public,” said Ishizaka, a local Tokyo politician, after participating in the parade.
Abandoned Japanese Amusement Park
Is there anything more desolate than an abandoned amusement park? These photos from a Japanese amusement park have just the right combination of beauty and creepiness. After the park was abandoned, metal began to rust and trees began to find their way into the left-behind rides.
i just want to go to japan and eat all the food
Sometimes the trees in rural Kyoto come to life. [鞍馬寺]
SHINJUKU Park Tower (by sinkdd)
Just received a clipping sent by Nikkei, Japan’s biggest newspaper (also the world’s biggest, with a daily circulation of 4 million), of coverage of the World Cup.
Some of the best lines from the full article (they sent a paper copy of the translation):
“The team from Middlebury College, having come from behind to defeat the University of Florida, celebrated on the field as their fans jumped from their seats and cheered. The athletes from Florida stood frozen in shock. The winning and losing teams’ expressions were filled with the same overflowing emotion you’d expect in baseball or soccer.”
“Teams are mixed-sex, another way in which Quidditch stands apart from the average. This feeling of freshness and uniqueness seems to have captured the hearts of young people.”
And very interestingly:
“Whether or not Muggle Quidditch succeeds in really setting down roots in the sports world depends on whether college students who have grown to love the game in college can continue to play once they graduate.”
In Japan, women cut their hair to leave their past behind.