"15 days and 14 family murders"

In keeping with yesterday's news theme, today the broadcast news programs reported how there have been 14 cases of intent to murder or murders within families in just 15 days.

To keep you updated on the latest family murder case, a 43 year-old woman, her 13 year-old daughter and 15 year-old son were found dead following a fire in Aomori prefecture.
Apparently the mother was found with a doll stuffed in her cut-open stomach.

The 18 year-old son and suspect was allegedly researching for a novel by collecting knives and manga books.

The mother had been to the police after being violentally abused by her son, claiming that he was mentally unstable and would need help.

Dozens of manga books were found in the suspects room, some depicting scenes of bloody murder.

The manga culture of Japan has been in question many times, especially in the foreign media. Most notably of late, the Virginia tech massacre brought asian influence to light with reports that the murderer had an interest in manga books and gory asian films.

Is it fair to lay partial blame on manga books for murder? Or is it a case of art imitating life?

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that is sick i hope the person gets cought i will catch him

Although the blurring between fantasy and reality is obviously at least partly to blame, I am convinced that Japanese culture is, despite the emphasis placed on harmony and cooperation, essentially confrontational and this basic aspect of life leads to many of the violent crimes that the media relish.

Look at what is shouted as encouragement at sports events - Fa-i-to! (fight). Come on - baseball is not a violent sport, nor is football (soccer). There is a story of a Japanese company who told their Canadian joint-venture partners that they would faito for the deal. The Canadians walked away following the interpretation, feeling their offer had been violently rejected. Actually, the Japanese were simply saying that they would work hard to make the deal a success.

Comparisons between products etc. are always presented as "versus" - exactly like a boxing match. One product is the "winner" in the "ranking".

"Battles" are commonly fought in non-violent arenas, such as the kitchen.

Now, you may say these are loan words, which do not reflect the true original meanings of the words when used by Japanese speakers. True, but what about "Ganbatte"? Although it can simply mean "good luck", it is actually an invocation to struggle against the odds. So why is it painted on signs held up by friends of those bringing antiques into the TV valuation show?

Other non-linguistic clues provide evidence that Japan is a confrontational society where ijime (bullying) is the norm, rather than the oft-touted nemawashi (consensus building).

The whole of the Japanese idea of jurisprudence is a moral minefield, but the relatives of crime victims seem more interested in revenge (preferably savage) than any justice (the recent decisions regarding crime victims' presence in court is another practical example of this basic premise). I've never lost a loved one to crime, but I hope that I would be able to rise above revenge as my primary emotion.

Beneath the harmony of Japan lies a very dark and murky well. This is, after all, a nation that still uses the death penalty, that had a secret political police torturing its own citizens to death until just over 60 years ago, and still enjoys a worship of edged weapons that rivals the USA's fetish for firearms.

So are manga simply a very visible expression of a part of the Japanese way of life that would like to stay hidden? I think so - they're a symptom, not a cause.

that is sick i hope the person gets caught i will catch him

name picture?

most people have issues... maybe its not the manga maybe it is. You never know what happened and neveer will it is not right for this to happen but it did. Some manga should not be aloud to childern. Not everything is about whta you read or see on tv. maybe the person just simply didnt like that family and wanted to be away from it in all.

Uhhh.. When you don't like someone, even your family, or whatever - well... you go away, avoid them - not hang around with them collecting manga and knives. He was 18, so could have just moved out instead of killing them!

As for manga being the cause - that's pretty weak, to say the least. It sounds more like the guy was unstable, just like his mom was saying! There's always stuff for those type of freaky psychos to go find and all that - but the 99.999..% of the rest of the people that read manga aren't going to go out and kill people because some of it's violent! It's the psycho that came to the art, not the art that created the psycho.

You're of course right about some manga not being for children - but that's the same for movies or even books, and other kinds of art.

Nice to see that the mother got so much help after going to the police - I bet if they'd even done a quick psych eval on the kid it would have come up with red flags.. but it sounds like they didn't do a thing.

I guess this was almost a year ago now by the date of the article - I hope they've caught they guy by now...

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