Lets not forget the dangerous undercurrent of nationalism that exist in certain area's of the country and the nation wide xenophobia (though this is getting better)
This is my humorous take on the racism that actually exists in Japan. You can literally be born in Japan, fluent in Japanese, lived there your entire life (The one speaker actually HAS) and it doesn't matter because you don't look Japanese. I freaking love Ken Tanaka. If you appreciate the culture and language, he's your guy.
You can't just up and go complain about something that you don't like, that whole "Nail that sticks up gets hammered." If you go to a restaurant you can't customize your order, they just don't do that. They have a lot of progress to make in the area of disabled rights, mental health, racism, animal rights, sexism, sex crimes, and sexual harassment. OH! And while they are perceived as technologically advanced, wifi at Starbucks is limited, very few companies accept e-mails, fax is preferred. While we come in with certain expectations of Japan, it's still many miles from the US. (And some of you think WE'RE the bad ones. I think we need to set a better example for the world, because the world views us and our people from what they see in the media.)
Anyway, I work for the DON (Department of the Navy), and if you patronize hostess bars, massage parlors, prostitutes and just about anything you can find in Soapland, and happen to get caught you will get into serious trouble!!! Human traffickers are largest providers of labor, and the DOD takes that very seriously it's basically like someone saying "Yeah, it's bad, but it's okay if it makes things more convenient for me." And they really don't like that. So, human trafficking and forced labor is alive and well in Japan, too...
There are a lot of other negatives I can think of, but these are the ones that bother me the most, really make my stomach churn when I think about them.
Japan is very Xenophobic. Many people in Rural areas and older people don't like outsiders and dislike the new japan.
Japan is very focused on efficiency and working hard since japan really doesn't have many resources to sell like wood, or metals... they thrive on business relations, and technological advancements for science, medicine, Tech etc... and people that live as a recluse are looked down upon.
Much of the "Honor" ideology is still there but in different forms.
much care is put into a families image and how you are a reflection of your family and how they view you as part of your family means a lot to Japanese people.
Daggerfall Nerd, your first two sentences just described many places in rural ANYWHERE. Xenophobic, hating how the country is shaping up, distrusting people outside of the ethnic norm. Yup, I could go to my Trump supporting neighbors if I wanted to see that. ^__^;
Being an American in Japan is tough.
Japanese are very nice but also during the war time, they are few of the most brutal and murderous people. They still try to cover their history up (and I am aware that every country does it, but still need to be addressed). Also, current government is changing its foreign policies so Japan can declare offensive war. USA restricted Japan's army size and its ability to declare war by putting a law during the occupation. Now they abandoned them and almost seems like preparing for some kind of war.
Also don't forget, government officials are worshipping and praising the war criminals, generals, soldiers and officials during the WW2.
However, this does not prove that Normal Japanese are not nice, or anything. There are many Japanese who are trying to oppose this and make their country more right. We have to keep in mind that its the government and the officials that are corrupted.
^uhhhh... no to the whole America abandoning them revenge thing. We're still present right now.
They are however working to loosen those anti-war laws, the reason being they have a hostile neighbor named North Korea. So yes, they do want to be able to engage in war.
Every country does have their dark past, especially from the earlier parts where there is still wars, etc. But one thing that I do know is the suicide rate in Japan is no joke. There is even a youtube documentary regarding to the Aokigahara or "Suicide Forest" where Japanese people go to commit suicide. They say that when a person is still hesitant on dying, they even bring ribbons to guide they're ways back. If you'll see those parts, damn. The ribbons are too many, I guess if your ribbon isn't that unique looking you'll still get lost and might be starve yourself to death. (Funny but I do think that way)
And another sad part for them is the population stuff. Man, talk about depressing when you look forward on getting a career in there if you had the opportunity. I at least want to be friends with a great Japanese person for once since I'm a huge fan in their culture. D:
Every place has some level of Xenophobia. The crime levels as a whole in Japan are even far less than Canada per capita, one of the most peaceful nations in the world.
Suicide rate in Japan may be high, but that's more of a problem as people are aging, and they want to die on their own terms, frankly, I don't blame them.
Japan is overall a wonderful country with its own unique set of problems, just like every country in the world. Compare to the likes of the US, or Europe, and its got less of them to deal with overall.
I personally like its a Christian minority nation, and a reason I think there's less crime. Christianity, unlike Buddhism, Shinto and Taoism, the dominant folk religions of Japan, doesn't emphasize honour as much as it should. In japan, if you're caught stealing, shame comes to your whole family, not just you. In Christianity, its the opposite, which allows people to selfishly rationalize their motives internally.
As if the light side of japan isn't already dark enough.