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Access to Sex Workers Curbs Sexual Assault, Says Japanese Mayor

Access to Sex Workers Curbs Sexual Assault, Says Japanese Mayor

Evidently, there was nothing wrong with using “comfort women” during World War II. You know, to “maintain discipline.” At least according to one Japanese mayor.

Wow. It looks like rape culture hasn’t changed that much since the 1940s.

“Comfort women,” if you don’t know, is a euphemism for what is essentially sex slavery. Women from China and the Korean peninsula were rounded up and forced to have sex with Japanese soldiers. Some historians think that 200,000 women were forced into this position.

But look, you guys. The mayor in question, Toru Hashimoto, doesn’t want to let rape happen. It’s necessary.

Mr. Hashimoto told reporters in Osaka on Monday that they had served a useful purpose. “When soldiers are risking their lives by running through storms of bullets, and you want to give these emotionally charged soldiers a rest somewhere, it’s clear that you need a comfort women system,” he said.

It’s clear, you guys! No one can reasonably think otherwise! If these young men are running through a hail of bullets, they are owed a little tail. And they’re gonna get what is owed to them.

That’s what he’s saying, right? That by virtue of risking their lives, Japanese soldiers were entitled to the bodies of others. Not cool, man. Not cool.

Oh, what the heck? I’m feeling generous today. Maybe he’s only referring to a particular moment in time. Don’t misunderstand me. The correct answer to the question, ‘How do you feel about comfort women?’ is always, always, ‘Not good.’ But let’s give this guy the benefit of the doubt.

Wait…he also said that US troops stationed in Japan should utilize the local sex industry in order to cut down on sexual assaults on local women.

Ah. OK. All my charity is gone. Because here’s the thing: How can you live in 2013 and not know that rape and sexual assault is not about getting your rocks off? It’s about power. It’s about the idea that one person has the right to use and discard another person without any consideration for how it effects the other person. So, sorry, Hashimoto, if I don’t take your claim that simply visiting a sex worker will eliminate sexual assaults. If that were true, there would be no such thing as a sexual assault.

I guess we can just file this under “Even More Evidence of Rape Culture.” Sigh.

 

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Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

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111 comments

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9:57AM PDT on Jul 8, 2013

o.o

5:57AM PDT on May 24, 2013

Had Mr. Hashimoto referred to women willingly working in the sex industry, how different would most of these comments be?

Legitimate sex workers pride themselves for the services they provide to the community (cutting down on sexual assaults being one of them), which is why they deserve the same kind of protection as any other working person.

12:56PM PDT on May 22, 2013

Thank you for the history lesson. I had no idea that this occurred in Japan. Far too many men believe that women were put here to serve them, but that kind of thinking is just wrong. No offense to good men, but what is wrong with the rest of the male sex. Even the bible reduces the place of women. We have to educate boys, and create a new sense of respect for women in our society. Mandatory parenting classes for highschool students would be a good place to begin.

9:24AM PDT on May 21, 2013

Obviously he sort of missed the fact that the International Military Tribunal for the Far East estimated that 20,000 women were raped, including infants and the elderly by Japanese soldiers when Nanjing fell..A large portion of these rapes were systematized in a process where soldiers would search door-to-door for young girls, with many women taken captive and gang raped. The women were often killed immediately after being raped, often through explicit mutilation or by stabbing a bayonet, long stick of bamboo, or other objects into the vagina. Which does beg the question what exactly was the Japanese military discipline like without "comfort women"?

6:29AM PDT on May 20, 2013

So the logic is that it is better to rape a known quantity of women ("comfort" probably isn't the word the women used for what was happening) then to risk the rape of all women? The mayor doesn't want to prohibit rape; he just wants to control it. Sorry, guy. That doesn't condone it for me.

8:26AM PDT on May 19, 2013

Comments made by males who apparently have no control at all over their own desires brings shame upon all males and they are certainly not all animals and live according to the BEAST WITHIN.

3:35AM PDT on May 19, 2013

at a loss for words

2:54AM PDT on May 19, 2013

ty

9:20PM PDT on May 18, 2013

Wow! Just when I thought the Japanese could not drag any more shame & disrepute on their nation we have this guy putting his big foot in his mouth. Not only do we have to cope with the Cove - slaughtering the dolphins, the slaughter of whales in the Southern Antarctic, we have to once again be reminded of the Japanese brutality in the 2nd World War.& if you don't believe me watch the Movie "A Bridge over the river Kwai". I told my daughters a long time ago you can marry anyone in the worls, any race, but please not Japanese.

10:41AM PDT on May 18, 2013

Men need to learn to control their bodies and lose evil desires. Whatever happened to loving one woman?

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