Japanese national newspaper Mainichi Shimbun set up a vote-matching website that Tokyo voters can access to know more about the candidates for the upcoming gubernatorial elections. The website allows users to run a check on candidates who have the same opinion as theirs on certain issues. It recently ran a survey which revealed that 42 percent of those who participated think that hate speech against Koreans in Japan should end.
Those who answered the survey have different views on hate speech, with 27 percent saying that they don’t see it causing any problems, while a close 24 percent said that it should be stopped. Contrasting views on hate speech became more apparent with age, as most young respondents believe that it is not a concern. Around 30 percent of people below the age of 20 said hate speech is not problematic, while only 18 percent seem to be affected by it. Older people also see to be more bent on punishing those who engage in hate speech, with around 33 percent of those in their 60s answering yes, as opposed to the 21 percent of those in their 20s. Political affiliations also play a factor in the respondents’ decisions, as half of those who support the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) said they are unaffected by hate speech, with only 8 percent of the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) thinking similarly.
With regards to the increase in consumption tax, age and political affiliation made no difference. 77 percent believe that the “tax rate should be lowered for essential goods if the consumption tax is set at 10 percent,” while a low 19 percent thinks otherwise. Of the nine candidates running in the Tokyo gubernatorial race, Kenji Utsunomiya, Toshio Tamogami, Yoichi Masuzoe and Morihiro Hosokawa and three others agree with lowering taxes for essential goods.
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