UPDATED: Amazon Japan removes some, not all. Tip of the iceberg…

Perhaps partly due to customer complaints made as Typhoon Vongfong swept over head, Amazon Japan removed some of the “candy doll collection” merchandise.

Some. Not all.

Evidently, somebody working at Amazon has decided that while videos of elementary school age girls in sexually provocative poses is no good, but junior high age is acceptable.

Why is this?

The Japanese law system is…well, completely archaic beyond belief, messed up, and rotten as all hell (and you can find this opinion even in the recent Nobel Prize winner Shuji Nakamura, who famously said in 2005, “The Japanese legal system is rotten.”). But above all, it is seemingly impervious to morals, decency…and common sense.

Japan only passed a law banning child pornography in June 2014.

That’s right. 2014. This summer.

Even then, the law allows explicit child pornography in cartoons…arguing that banning cartoons violated “freedom of expression.”

It is this kind of lax attitude that led the US State Department in 2013 to accuse Japan of being an international “hub” of child prostitution and pornographic material distribution.

The problem is that the laws of “consent” are vague, to say the least. The legal age of sexual consent in Japan is said to “generally” be 18, but in many prefectures the age is set as low as 13…even between adults and children…if there is “proof” of a “romantic relationship” or if the parents of the minor approve.

This is statutory rape in most developed countries. Blatantly so.

Japanese citizens cannot vote, drink, or smoke until the age of 20. So that means an “adult” is over the age of 20. Can a 20 year old have a “romantic relationship” with a 13 year old?

Apparently so, in Japan.

So that means depictions of 13 year olds wearing leotards in sexual positions are OK, right? Amazon continues to think so.

So does Rakuten. And Yahoo Japan Shop. And Tsutaya. And Yes Asia.

The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) claimed in 1999 that they would clamp down on sexual exploitation of children in Japan. They meant “elementary school children.” Junior high and senior high children are apparently fair game.

Shall we put up a sign saying “Child molesters, Welcome!” for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics? Because that’s what it sure looks like online right now.

About MThomas

Long ago, I gave up my high school dreams of becoming the next Carl Sagan and instead wound up working (in order) at McDonald's, a '60s-themed restaurant, a video rental store, a used bookstore, a computer seller, Kinko's, a Jewish newspaper company, and an HR firm. I eventually became a teacher of intercultural communication in Kyoto, where I vainly attempt to apply quantum mechanics to language teaching, practice martial arts and Zen Buddhism, and always keep one eye on the sky. And yes, I know my profile photo's backward. I just think it looks better this way.
This entry was posted in age of consent, international hub, Japan, Japanese law, Japanese politics, Japanese society, online shopping and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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