I guess one part of me is happy the courts said something to this group of asshats (HT to Aaron):
A vocal anti-Korean group was ordered Monday to stop a “hate speech” campaign against a Pyongyang-linked school, in a rare court ruling against racial discrimination in Japan.
A civil court in Kyoto also ordered the group and its activists to pay some 12 million yen ($120,000) in damages to the elementary school run by affiliates of the pro-North Korean General Association of Korean Residents in Japan.
Members of the group, formed in 2006 to eliminate what they called “privileges” given to Korean residents in Japan, staged loudspeaker demonstrations outside the school three times in 2009 and 2010, the district court ruling said.
They shouted such slogans as “Throw Korean schools out of Japan” and “This is a front for training North Korean spies.” They also posted video clips of the demonstrations on the Internet.
Oh, they’ve shouted much worse than that, including calls for the rape of Korean women. Pure class. At least one demonstrator held up a sign that read “Fuck Korea,” no doubt a tribute to Japanese colonial policy between 1910 and 1945.
Mind you, I dislike “hate speech” legislation (which neither Japan nor Korea have), and I’d be extremely wary of a court citing the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination rather than domestic law, which is what the court did in this case. It also leaves a bad taste in my mouth that the group will be giving money to a school essentially run by North Korea, which means if it’s anything like most things North Korean, there’s probably a fair amount of hate going on.
Also, to be fair to the Zaitokukai, the far-right anti-Korean group in question, they have shown at times that they can be equal-opportunity in their hate:
On October 31, 2009, Zaitokukai protested Westerners in Halloween costumes, waving a sign that stated, “This is not a white country.”
On 24 January 2010, members of Zaitokukai stated towards Caucasian foreigners, “Go home, white pigs!” in a public demonstration against a bill to give foreigners the right to vote.
Frankly, I think the protest against Halloween is pretty cool. Wouldn’t be entirely upset if Ilbe or some other like-minded group would did that here.
Speaking of Ilbe, some on the left-wing of the Korean political spectrum have likened Korea’s largely right-wing social website to Zaitokukai, noting that both began as (and in the case of Ilbe, still remains) online groups. I don’t really read Ilbe, and most of the complaining I read about Ilbe comes from sources I don’t always trust, but even a cursory glance at some of their stuff turns up some gems. Where I think the real comparisons can be drawn, however, are with groups like those described in this post last year written following the election of Rep. Jasmine Lee.