Tuesday, January 30, 2007


JAPAN HEALTH MINISTER VIEWS WOMEN AS 'CHILD-BEARING DEVICES
'

Reality intrudes slowly for some people. For others, it intrudes not at all: the current Health Minister of Japan, for example. Apparently selected from a stockpile of political dinosaurs the LDP keeps stashed away in an underground bunker somewhere, Hakuo Yanagisawa, the man in charge of national health and who presumably should be an exemplar of health- and body-related attitudes (though I admit that's asking a lot of a Japanese male who is still of the Edo period), in a Saturday speech on Japan's birth rate problem, in a slip of consciousness called women child-bearing machines. "Because the number of child-bearing machines and devices is fixed, all we can ask for is for them to do their best per head." So let's accelerate overall line production and per-head unit output, ladies. He later apologized, since women can vote in these modern times, but now that we all know how he thinks, they should put him in charge of a bakery or something, maybe he could monitor a bread-making device.

4 comments:

Joy Des Jardins said...

Uh-oh, someone stepped into big time on this one. That bakery idea isn't bad...

John said...

The Japanese health minister should look to Scandinavia to find out how to make it easer for women to combine family with work.
I have written about it in our blog:

http://www.asiaobserver.com/index.php?option=com_jd-wp&Itemid=435&p=18

John

Pam said...

I agree with John that Japan should do more to support working mothers. I also think the whole country needs a new way of looking at parenting. It seems to be depicted as such a chore and not much fun at all.

Winston said...

Ooooh... Even Bushkie has never stepped on his yen that badly...