Regarding Roger Pulvers’ Aug. 21 Counterpoint article, “Should wartime and peace allow such different attitudes to murder?“: It is sad that many acts are glorified when they are so similar to certain others that are not glorified. Our portrayal of historical incidents is much like advertisements in that we tempt people via tinted glasses to buy products they may or may not need.
The August 1944 episode of the 1,788 passengers aboard the ill-fated Tsushima Maru is sad indeed. If a Hollywood director made a movie about it, the U.S. Navy submarine that sank the transport ship might be glorified as it has been at the memorial in Hawaii.
I wish more Japanese youngsters would take a genuine interest in their past, not dwelling on it regressively but imagining a more positive future, with the ability to read between the lines of the “glorified heroism” that Pulvers mentions in the last paragraph.
The world mainly goes by appearances, as is well described in “Blink: the Power of Thinking Without Thinking,” by Malcolm Gladwell. The sooner we realize that, the better, although the current trend is one of denial. Thanks to Pulvers for a very good article toward that kind of realization.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.