Let's cut to the chase: the REAL answer in people's heads who are "innocuously" asking the question that everyone is afraid to answer aloud is, "There's no black or brown people."
I mean, let's be frank here. That's what EVERYONE is thinking. But the easy answer is the same as "Why do Asians show up in the US and become the "model minority" while blacks have been here for hundreds of years and well..."
I love it when people so easily pose these questions, with little or no thought to historical context and group consciousness. Here's the easy answer. Well, 1) there's not a disenfranchised, racialized underclass in Japan, and 2) the government is actually doing its JOB or people trust that it will. To the racist little birdie chirping in people's heads, note that middle or upper-class colored folks weren't rioting or looting in Katrina. And the media exaggerated and misrespresented many of the reports, anyway. There actually WASN'T a lot of looting in Katrina, although there was a whole lotta taking of things needed to survive. Or in the LA Riots, people were pissed at AUTHORITY. Shit, *I* wanted to go break a store window that night.
You know, it's not a part of minorities' genetic code. I hate all this implicitly racist "questions" in which everyone knows what the REAL question is but no one will say it outright. So I bit and stepped up to the plate.
American blacks in New Orleans, the urban poor in the cities, who comprise the kids who give up on life and participate in cultures of death, as found in gang violence, drug addiction, as well as drug selling, have given UP. There IS no system for them, and yeah, when the power goes out or Rodney King gets beat down and the assailants convicted, or floodwaters rise and no helicopters are heard for 4 DAYS, it's about GETTIN' MINE.
And remember history -- the history of urban rioting or looting is young, about as young as the existence of an underclass. If blacks were so unruly or genetically prone to wilding out against the man, blacks would have been stringing up Whitey, posting white heads on stakes, and "raping errybody" out there after slavery ended. But that never happened.
If you want to talk about the real motivations for rioting and looting, you need to talk about WHY certain groups of people have less respect for authority, often constitute a perpetual underclass in the societies they are a part of, and are often simply just POOR.
I'm not condoning it or condemning it. It's just WHY these things happen. But it's no socio/psychological mystery. But since people think it to be, I'll break it down even easier:
EDUCATED, WELL-FED FOLKS WHO ARE TREATED WITH RESPECT BY THEIR SOCIETIES AND WHO CONSEQUENTLY FEEL LIKE THEY HAVE A STAKE IN THEIR SOCIETIES DON'T LOOT OR RIOT.
It's not a fucking mystery.
Oh, and there have been groups of people who have protested and even rioted against authority in Japan. Okinawa and Okinawans are treated like shit, and Okinawa is the dumping ground for everything the Japanese don't want on the main island. Even the author's assumption is faulty, since there HAVE been such incidents in even Japanese history.
The best example is in Japan's 2nd worst earthquake in history, the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, when the Japanese populace infamously spread rumors that Koreans were hoarding supplies, poisoning wells, and even using their magical powers (!) to curse the Japanese people. Ethnic Koreans were beaten to death, hung, and raped, murdered.
"Derrrrrr, duhhhhhh, why don't the Japanese loot or riot?"
Must be their ancient culture, their reverence for their elders, or maybe something in their sake, or perhaps because they eat fish? Or maybe because there's no black people. All are about as equally likely explanations. Maybe their rice-based diet causes them to secrete less of a certain kind of hormone that decreases the tendency to express aggressions...derrrrr...duhhhhh...
Or maybe obvious socio-historical circumstances can provide the answer?
Because at one time, after a similar great disaster, Japanese were some rioting, murderous mofos who strung up their ethnic minorities from the rafters.
Stop the thinly-veiled innuendoes and pussyfooting around the real subject that EVERYONE is thinking about, by posing an open-ended question as if the thought of black people in Katrina or brown people in other countries' disasters NEVER popped into the writer's head when writing the article.
Why do some cultures react to disaster by reverting to everyone for himself, but others – especially the Japanese – display altruism even in adversity?
Give me a fucking break. Some "cultures?!" Get specific, get into the history, get into societal circumstances. Because "Japanese culture" was once looting and rioting like a motherfucker against its ethnic minorities, namely the Koreans and the Ainu, which isn't suprising considering how seriously they were maligned and mistreated back then. It's not like that now, so things are different now.
It's not because of an ever-present, unchanging "culture."
This article, in asking its "innocuous" question, is disingenuous and intellectually cowardly. Perhaps the writer is not up to the task of writing about this issue responsibly, or as if he had half a brain. Don't half-step it -- deal with the issues squarely and do your homework -- or don't pick up your fucking pen in the first place.
You can take your "culture" argument and stick it up your ignorant ass. This is the level of thinking that journalists have at the Telegraph, even on its blog?