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Angry Japanese school parent writes angry letter to Incheon City Council after Fukuoka Univ. profs forced to sing, dance with ‘doumi’ girls

A person identifying himself/herself as a “parent of a student at Fukuoka University” has penned an angry letter to Incheon City Council’s planning and administration committee, reports Ye Olde Chosun.

The letter asked the council, which among other things runs the University of Incheon, to reveal what happened to two Fukuoka University professors during an August visit to Korea for an “international exchange event to experience Korean culture” (attended by the two profs and 20 students).

According to the email, two University of Incheon professors took their two Japanese counterparts to dinner in Songdo, after which they had drinks at a nearby entertainment establishment. At this establishment, the University of Incheon professors made the Japanese professors sing and dance with two female employees for about an hour.

Oh, the humanity.

The Japanese professors reportedly refused several times, but the Korean professors insisted.

The email said, “Don’t the University of Incheon professors misunderstand the meaning of entertaining guests? Their actions were indiscreet for an adult, showed no distinction between public and private, and could be thought of as insulting to Japanese. Can you use public funds for something like that so easily in Korea? It’s something that could never happen in Japan and a crime. It’s something that could never be tolerated, either rationally or ethically.”

The parent asked Incheon City Council to reveal what happened and prevent a recurrence for better exchanges in the future, for the University of Incheon and, above all, for the children.

About the incident, the University of Incheon explained the Korean professors took their Japanese counterparts as a personal courtesy rather than part of the official events and paid with their own money. The university did say it would pay greater attention in the future so that things like this didn’t happen again.

NOTE: Things added to the post as the Chosun added things to their story.

About the author: Just the administrator of this humble blog.

  • gbnhj

    Wow – this is a crime? What’s the penalty in Japan for this sort of thing?

    (By the way, I like the tag for this post. Here’s hoping that this is but the first of many.)

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    I’d be upset too if the chaperones of an overseas school trip in which my daughter participated spent part of their time whoring around – and I ‘d hold both the chaperones and their hosts responsible.

  • gbnhj

    The email alleges that they spent an hour singing and dancing. Doesn’t much sound like an academic pursuit, but it doesn’t sound carnal either.

  • Wedge

    They should return the favor by bringing the Koreans to a no-pan shabu shabu joint.

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    The more I read about Japan the more I am starting to hate them.

  • Wedge

    #6: Uh, don’t get carried away here. Japan and Japanese people are great. Yes, there is a wacked-out fringe, but if you don’t live there or visit there, you won’t see the people for what they really are.

    Do you base your opinion of Korea and Koreans on flag-eating Dokdo protestors or VANK clowns who buy full-page ads in the NY Times? I hope not.

  • SalarymaninSeoul

    Do I have to go to see the vending machines with middle school girls’ used panties to appreciate Japan?

  • Yu Bum Suk

    Hilarious. I can’t believe they’d mind. That’s *never* happened to them in Japan? Perhaps Japan’s so expensive you can’t even afford that on a professor’s salary.

  • tapadamornin

    The singing and dancing for an hour part wasn’t in the email from the parent. From the email, the parent makes it seem like the Incheon professors were using public funds to pay for hostesses to entertain the Fukuoka professors. Hostess clubs are associated with gangsters and the sex industry here, so that’s probably the root cause of this letter, and probably where the “crime” part of the letter comes into play.

    Based on the tone used in the letter, it sounds like the parent got an incomplete account of the night from their child and went into full “Won’t Someone Please Think of the Children” mode.

    For those of you who can read Japanese, here is the full letter:
    http://www.kyeongin.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=688014

    The thing I don’t understand, is why the student would have even known what happened that night.

  • yuna

    I wonder if it’s because they asked the professors to lip their stockings.

  • cm

    So Japan doesn’t have kareoke houses with women singing along to entertain the men. That never happens in Japan. Yeah right.

  • tapadamornin

    No, quite the opposite. This happens all the time, but they’re not karaoke shops, they’re host or hostess bars (Kyabakura キャバクラ).

    They are also regulated under the “Businesses Affecting Public Morals Regulation Law” which is also the law in place to regulate (HA!) bath houses and other red-light district practices.

    Needless to say, if the parent thought the professors were mixed up in some kind of hostess situation, you can see where the anger would come from (justified or not).

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    @12

    as if that were the point.

  • yuna

    We don’t know what really happened but if the Japanese really protested no, then they should have stopped straight away.

    ご 遠慮 being polite and declining and really saying no because one doesn’t want to..the difference is blurred often in Asian culture.
    A Swedish guy I knew once told me how he hated when he went on business in China because they took him to Room Salons and brought out all the whores. I think similar things exist in Japan but they have learned to read and not insist things on people. It’s like the Eskimos(yeahyeah Inuits) “Please sleep with my wife” – very primitive.

    Also, the Japanese, knowing that these 도우미 girls in Japan often further extend their range of services, could have protested more strongly.

    I don’t understand the 노래방 도우미 culture either. We can plug in our own microphones, they don’t need to show us.

  • yuna

    #13
    Yeah, my point. They knew(presume) therefore they protest.

  • Arghaeri

    Do I have to go to see the vending machines with middle school girls’ used panties to appreciate Japan?

    Can’t say I’ve ever seen such a machine in Japan!

  • http://www.chinasmack.com/tag/funny/page/3 Jakgani

    I have been forced by my Korean employers to sing before.

    I sing terrible and they ask me to stop and never ask me again.

  • Arghaeri

    I’d be upset too if the chaperones of an overseas school trip in which my daughter participated spent part of their time whoring around – and I ‘d hold both the chaperones and their hosts responsible.

    Maybe so, but since this is University of Fukoka professors and therefore presumably adult undergraduates whats your point exactly?

  • silver surfer

    @15

    So you’re saying the Japanese parent who wrote the letter fails to understand the nuances of Japanese culture?

  • yuna

    #15
    No, I think it’s two different things.
    1.Saying no to be polite which the Koreans might have (mis) presumed the Japanese were doing
    2. and the (mis)presuming of the Japanese parents (and the professors) who equated Noraebang Toumi to be automatically equivalent to a paid sexual services, which might have a better control and enforcement of jurisdiction in Japan, especially with regards to where public funds (or Education) are concerned.

  • yuna

    #20

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    @19

    Even assuming the students were adults, and that in loco parentis no longer applies in Japanese universities, the fact that the students were accompanied by professorial chaperones, whose presence I further assume was a condition for the students receiving parental permission to attend, my point remains the same: both the Japanese and Korean professors acted improperly and I’d hold them responsible.

  • cm

    #23

    My understanding of the letter was that it wasn’t the complaining parent’s kid who was forced to sing along with the hostess, it was the Japanese professor who was forced. What did the Japanese professor had to say about all this?

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    And you think the parent’s were complaining on the professors’s behalf? Duh?

  • cm

    It looks like this has turned into a huge international incident that’s on front page news in Korea.

    http://news.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2012/10/30/2012103000053.html?news_top

    The Korean professors who say they paid out of their own pockets, are under the microscope and I would guess they are under fire.

  • DLBarch

    I have close to zero interest in this story, and am all too familiar with the forced whoring (or whatever) that goes on throughout Asia with regard to entertaining foreign visitors (and is hardly confined to Korea).

    I would suggest, though, that this story is being driven in large part by the fact that it involves academics…with all the schadenfreude that comes with exposing those with exalted status.

    If this story involved sleazy pols or business types (are there any other kinds?), well, then it probably wouldn’t be a story at all.

    Call it the irony of academe. If one wants the respect Korean society places on scholarship, then the country’s scholars really do have to abstain from the temptations (and embarrassments) of the floating world.

    Or at least be more discreet about it.

    DLB

  • Arghaeri

    mis)presuming of the Japanese parents (and the professors) who equated Noraebang Toumi to be automatically equivalent to a paid sexual services

    Maybe they took “doumi girls” dor an english term :-)

  • Arghaeri

    Even assuming the students were adults, and that in loco parentis no longer applies in Japanese universities, the fact that the students were accompanied by professorial chaperones, whose presence I further assume was a condition for the students receiving parental permission to attend, my point remains the same: both the Japanese and Korean professors acted improperly and I’d hold them responsible.

    So for arguments sake you’ll accept the presumption the students are adults, but you still assume they need their parents permission to go on a university exchange trip :roll:

    further, so far I have seen no mention of chaperone

  • Arghaeri

    Sperwered :-(

    Further, I have seen no mention of professional chaperone except from you, what is the source of this assumption. Any trip arranged by university I’ve ever been on has been accompanied by staff as liaison/organisers/educators but never as chaperone!

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    You haven’t seen it from me either; your dyslexia is acting up; I referred to professorial chaperones – which, even assuming the students were “adults”, is what they appear to have been.

  • Awarren

    I have never thought of that angle. Do people with dyslexia also have trouble writing intelligibly. That would explain why it is so difficult to weed through this guy’s writing.

  • Arghaeri

    Fair comment Sperwer, misread that, but you still don’t address why if accompanying adults, the professors aren’t allowed out!

  • Arghaeri

    Of course they do A.Joe, however in my case i have big thumbs a small keyboard and no editing function.

    What’s your excuse :-)

  • http://www.sperwerslog.com Sperwer

    I think they are allowed out; but not their little drunken sailors.

  • Anonymous_Joe

    My excuse is that I didn’t write the comment.
    //*************
    (BTW, I am generally forgiving of minor spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors. The board does not have a preview function, and it’s not like were writing binding international treaties.)

  • Anonymous_Joe

    we’re (see what I mean?)

  • Arghaeri

    Damned dyslexia… :roll:

  • Arghaeri

    Why not Sperwer, assuming they’re adults.
    Why shouldn’t they go out with the profs, as long as by choice?

    Never had any problem or qualms about having a drink or three with my profs out of class?

  • Arghaeri

    Were the students in attendance btw, can’t read Japanese to get the full picture of events?

  • itinerant physicist

    This terrible crime happened to me too. One of the universities in Seoul was interested in hiring me, and as part of the job interview the profs took me out on a tour of some hostess bars… I was forced to degrade myself by singing and chatting with the charming bargirls while drinking champagne and sampling various nice foods… The profs were at pains to emphasize that they didn’t go out like this very often, maybe once a year. I told them that if they promise to start doing it twice a month then I definitely want to join their university :)