OSAKA, Japan, Dec. 19, 2012?Though thousands of miles away from the RH Bill maelstrom, Japan is home to Filipinos who have followed updates on the controversial bill and are worried the Philippines will follow Japan’s demographic nightmare of rampant suicides, a low birth rate and a graying population.
“[The Japanese] have also lost that zest for the value of life,” said Fr. Robert Paul Zarate, parish priest of Atsugi in the Kanagawa Prefecture.
Abortion, suicide, low birth rate
For Fr. Zarate, the state of his adopted country, Japan, ? where sex is considered “play”, abortion a wise option and people who commit suicide at train stations considered as mere nuisances? is a preview of what will happen to the Philippines when the RH Bill becomes a law.
According to Zarate, the Japanese have lost the connection between sex and the possible consequence of a child.
Zarate, who has lived in Japan for 12 years now, also laments how soft-porn magazines are available in convenience stores; kids who underperform in school are told to “just die”; and there are more pet dogs than actual human babies.
“Disappointed” over RH vote
For the priest, the RH vote outcome is indicative of Filipinos’ bad electoral decisions.
“My reaction was to immediately blame the Filipinos themselves ? for electing these kinds of politicians, for succumbing to being ignorant, gullible and manipulated by the “educated” rich,” explained Zarate, who is also a parish priest in Tsukui.
Benjamin Tolentino, a computer programmer in Osaka, also commented on the recent vote on the bill in both Houses, “I was disappointed. My consolation however is that those who voted “no” really showed a lot of courage.”
According to a Washington Post article, “The population (of Japan) is aging and shrinking ? a formula for economic calamity and social stagnation.”
For the last several months, Japan Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has put his job on the line to back a 10% tax increase to fund the social security system, which an increasingly graying segment of the population relies on.
Latest statistics pegs Japan’s population growth rate at -0.077%. [Nirva’ana Ella Delacruz]