Surely the voters can do better

Regarding the Dec. 2 article “Secrecy law protests ‘act of terrorism’: LDP secretary-general“: Day by day it is becoming clearer that the leaders of the Liberal Democratic Party have not really changed, as their true colors shine through with increasing radiance. Yet, once again a high-ranking member of the party has demonstrated the LDP’s callousness and arrogance.

Party Secretary-General Shigeru Ishiba has publicly declared that civilians who protested the ramming of the new state secrecy bill through parliament were little more than terrorists.

When the LDP returned to power at the end of 2012, the party’s leaders at least wore masks of humility, displaying an attitude that could be described as “we realize that the people might turn against us again if we ignore their sentiments.”

Now it’s as if they’re saying “we know what’s best, so shut up and let us take care of business.”

This is the same party whose leaders have labeled women of the land “birth-giving machines” (Hakuo Yanagisawa, January 2007), characterized hundreds of unemployed people gathering in a Hibiya Park tent village as slackers (Tetsushi Sakamoto, January 2009), and snubbed the nation’s elderly — many of whom vote consistently for the LDP — as “feeble” (Taro Aso, January 2013). Aso went on to suggest that the objects of his consternation should refrain from taking action to prolong their wretched lives.

What’s next? Will people who don’t vote for the LDP — or those who oppose nuclear power — be branded unpatriotic, or as “terrorists,” if they try to expose dirty secrets?

Voters of Japan: Is this the best you can do? Do we have to simply put up with this? Moreover, do the people exist for the government — as the LDP seems to believe — or does the government exist for the people? I believe it is the latter.

donald wood
akita

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.