EDIT: The internet is telling me all these anti-Japanese sentiments began with a Family Guy staff writer’s joke tweet. He deleted the tweet and apologized, though other Americans might actually mean it as evident by their Facebook vitriol?
The last 48 hours for Japan have been rough: two earthquakes, a tsunami, and fears of nuclear meltdown.
A logical, possible explanation? A solar flare.
Some cesspoolian Americans, however, viewed these natural phenomena as the work of a spiritual deity. These Americans believe the universe was angry at Japan for Pearl Harbor, and decided to wait more than 50 years to dish out karmic justice. Except these Americans didn’t say it like that. More like: “Fuck Japan! Remember Pearl Harbor? Karma’s a bitch!” Yeah.
When I think of all the Americans that never learned of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings, my forehead wrinkles with worry. No Child Left Behind is doing a worse job than we imagined!
If I had to pick a country, between the United States and Japan, that would get karmic retribution for actions in World War II, I’d pick the United States (body count, occupation). If I were to follow the Facebooking-karmic-justice-Americans logic, where nature takes it upon herself to punish man for the things he does to his fellow man, I’d have to assume that Katrina, the tornadoes tearing up the midwest, the BP Oil Spill (why not?) and every other natural catastrophe to hit the states EVER, is retribution for things America did in prior wars. Or am I being silly here, because America don’t have to worry about karmic retribution? I don’t know the rules to this karma-blame-game… maybe America is exempt.
But what about New Zealand? Following the logic stated above, one could argue the Christchurch earthquake happened because of the Anglo-Maori wars centuries ago. And the flooding in Australia? Oh, the universe is always punishing that country – they’re a country of criminals, you see?
But really, why Pearl Harbor?
My hypothesis: the film “Pearl Harbor” played recently (ahem, on repeat for a week) on some cable channel, making the battle of Pearl Harbor fresh in commonplace American minds. These Americans heard the world “Japan” on the news, and were like, “I just watched a movie with Ben Affleck, and that tsunami country bombed us in the movie! Serves them right, durrr, derr.”
(I don’t know if “Pearl Harbor” aired recently, but this makes me think my idea has merit…)
CLOSING EDIT: That joke flew over my head and now I feel silly. Perhaps all those Facebook people were really imitating Alec Sulkin. Reddit does not know this yet, nor does Viceland.com, linked above. (3:30pm CST)
Two days ago, New Hampshire state representative Nick Levasseur wrote this as his facebook status: “Anime is a prime example that two nukes just wasn’t enough” . (Click here to watch a video compilation of the local media’s take)
Nick appears to be around 26 years old. Nick looks like he watches anime. I think Nick was telling a joke. A really bad one, but nonetheless, a joke. Would you ever hear a Japanese politician joke that they should bomb Pearl Harbor again because they just can’t stand our summer blockbusters? Absolutely not.
This isn’t the first time Nicky has made really bad jokes though. Back in 2007, on his Myspace page he listed under his interests: “the hunting of neo-conservative Reaganites” and in 2008, also on his Myspace page, he described himself as “the magic mushroom. Shove me in a dark place, feed me a fist full of shit, and watch me grow!” This latest attempt at a joke, by insulting the Japanese tragedy, reveals his under developed sense of humor.
No other country in the world has been attacked with nuclear weapons, and if you know ANYTHING about Japanese history, or culture, you know to this day they still struggle with that happened to them (hello, Godzilla films?). Consider the new book, ” The Last Train from Hiroshima” or even this recent gem about Hayden Panettiere’s efforts to save dolphins in Japan:
As the group arrived, a truck of right-wing nationalists blasted slogans, saying Japan should not be singled out for whaling and dolphin hunts because Westerners “are killing cows.” They also demanded President Barack Obama apologize for the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
–‘Heroes’ Actress visits Japan dolphin hunt town via Associated Press
Japanese society has long used the arts to deal with their nuclear past, and if you are going to include anime in this artistic realm, you have to mention the famous manga-turned-anime-turned-American-film Astro Boy. Astro Boy was born in 1951…. just years after the bombs were dropped. Astro Boy’s name in Japan is “Mighty Atom” and is a direct reference to the nuclear attacks. Astro Boy was made to appeal to little boys, perhaps to help the children cope with new post-war reality?
Sadly, this joke also reveals that Nick has never seen any good anime. Action movies tend to be really bad too, but I don’t go around advocating the bombing of Hollywood…. and every once in a while, an action film does comes along that I can appreciate (Fifth Element, for example…). The same applies to anime.
If you’d like to watch some good anime films, I’d recommend anything by Oscar winner Hayao Miyazaki, as well as the films Paprika, Ghost in the Shell (which Spielberg is remaking), and Perfect Blue. For anime series, I’d recommend Cowboy Bebop, Neon Genesis Evangelion and Lain (though the last two do get creepy later on).