Regarding Tomohiro Osaki’s Oct. 1 front-page article “Nation reflects on crimes against kids“: While recognizing the existing cultural hurdles entrenched in Japanese culture — especially those which pertain to an ingrained work ethic that frowns upon fathers in particular playing a role in parenting — it still seems clear that more must be done to protect children against crimes such as kidnapping.
In the wake of the recent heinous attacks on the vulnerability of children simply going to and from school, I agree with the article that important questions must be raised for further debate on whether schoolchildren should be more closely supervised. Without suggesting the imposition of Western ideals, surely a re-examination of the laws in Japan pertaining to the notion of whether leaving underage children at home is a form of neglect seems prudent.
Despite the very positive step of many schools’ encouraging children to walk together in groups, more could be done to ensure that children are escorted by adults in addition to educating them on potential threats.
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.
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