Excuse the informality.
If you’ve been on Twitter for the last week and a half and have been keeping up with other J-enthusiasts. The world Flyjin has crept into our lexicon as “Someone who flys out of Japan out of fear of the supposed coming Nuclear Fallout from the great Tohoku earthquake and resulting tsunami.” Succinct to say people have their reasons for leaving while those who continue to stay behind have a mentality of “we’re more hardcore badasses for staying. Look at the sheep run in fear”.
I find this squabble within the community fascinating in a “I can’t look away” sense. Instead of the community uniting under a tragedy, and in some ways they are as I’ve seen tons of people tweeting they’ve donated to Red Cross and started doing donation drives, charity concerts, some people are even crowd source writing a book for charity. Some people have decided to enter a US VS THEM mentality within the small oppressed minority of foreigners living in Japan.
It reminds me of this group back at my first high school. More than half of the population in my high school was from a variety of backgrounds. Therey were these two groups that were vetting against each other: one group, students born from parents from Mexico and the other students born in Mexico and traveled here to attend High School. The big power struggle was how much “Mexican” they are. How they portrayed themselves and maintained as much patriotic identity with Mexican values. It was a battle to see “Who’s more Mexican? Who’s the better Mexican?”
I see the exact same thing going on here. As one of my friends quoted once: “Life is just another type of High School.” I was in denial about this but now I’m on the fence about it when Flyjin started cropping up.
My question is: Why is this such a big issue? Why should it matter? Why are we even ridiculing others for their decisions? Who thought that staying behind means you’re better than the people that are leaving? I get the “its different between those who love and live in a country they aren’t born from and those born in it”. And I get how difficult being told that “You Will Never Be Truly Japanese”. But raging on the same folks who are told the same things only makes you look bad. Nobody is getting gold metals from mocking others. We’ve got bigger fish to fry than to squabble amongst ourselves.
I realize its a very small portion of foreigners in Japan that are doing this and am certainly not implying that everybody living there are doing this. This whole Flyjin business is a no win. It creates extra drama where there should be none in the first place.
Thats my 2 yen.