Japan is quite notorious for being historically and culturally a patriarchy. The latest case of a Japanese medical university throwing women to the side just for being female is more evidence that something needs to change (“Med school cut scores to reduce female entrants,” Aug. 3). It is astonishing to me that in the 21st century, this kind of discrimination is still happening.

Japan is a developed country, but it is obvious Japanese society is still struggling to keep up with women’s rights. There is not a country I am aware of that has figured out how to have a perfectly fair society, but Japan refuses to even have this discussion: How should Japan move forward to make things right for women?

Being punished for being a woman is unacceptable. Regardless of what the university thinks will happen to these women once they become doctors, they should be given equal opportunity. If they decide to put their careers on hold to raise a child, that is up to them. They have every right to leave the workplace for whatever reason they see fit. It is not up to university admissions offices to determine what these prospective doctors do in the future. Women should demand to be given the same opportunity as men, although the outcomes may be different.

Attitudes toward women and their roles in society need to be broadcast more openly. The Me Too movement has not picked up steam in Japan for this exact reason. Women are being treated like second-class citizens and nothing is being done to resolve it. The first step to solving a problem is to accept that there is one.


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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