People are watching who says what about the Tokyo Olympic Games, and realizing that not all people in JOC, the Japanese Government, the Worldwide Olympic Partners, organizations which have broadcast rights or IOC are saying the same thing.
The president of IOC said that Japanese people were patient so that they could go through the turbulence of the situation, or some people said that Japanese people would be happy to watch the games if the games started or more people got vaccinated.
Other people said that it had to depend upon the medical situation in Japan at that time whether the games would be held or canceled, or said that the situation, which some people kept ignoring public opinion of Japan (‘NO to the Olympics’), was far away from The Olympic Charter, which supposed to cherish peace (‘building relationships’) by sharing the joy and interacting each other at the event.
Hachi, as a citizen of Japan, feels that many Japanese people are not anxious about the situation right now, nor anxious about the medical situation and the pandemic after the Tokyo Olympics: she/they are angry about arrogance of some people’s attitude.
She would like to ask some people who keep ignoring public opinion of Japan: “Where are you after the games? Perhaps, in YOUR COUNTRY, not in JAPAN.”
(About some people in Japan, citizens have the right to vote. It is unusual that Japanese people who are said to be calm are angry at the organizers and the Japanese government.)
Being insensitive is a winner?
Unconscious bias to Asian people or the lands in Asia makes some people patronize Japan and Japanese people, and some people are making money by holding the Olympic Games?
If so, they might be able to keep doing as they want one-sidedly but they seem not to realize that they are losing their trust, which is hard to build and can be broken in one day, and their names might be recorded in history and last forever.
In Japan, new variant of coronavirus identified in England is spreading rapidly now, and new variant of coronavirus identified in India is found two days ago.
Perhaps, some of the countries have already faced the situations so that you know what Japan has to do.
Some cracks can be creative, others must be avoided or filled in immediately once those are found.
Added on June 10th, 2021
Whose responsibility would it be if Delta coronavirus variant spread in Japan or new coronavirus variant would be born during and after the games?
Does IOC take responsibility for the possible mess? (The same thing can be said for WHO and some presidents who agreed with the Tokyo Olympics as well. Are you expressing the agreement because the Tokyo Olympics would hold far away from your country? )
According to the japan times, IOC clearly shows their attitude, and they did not mention the possible mess after the games.
“While the IOC has promised to hold a safe games even during the global health crisis, The organizers of this summer’s Tokyo Olympics plan to require athletes to acknowledge that they may face health risks or death caused by coronavirus infections and intense summer heat.
The International Olympic Committee has included such risks in a waiver that must be signed by athletes, stipulating that they take part in the games at their ‘own responsibility,’ according to a copy seen by Kyodo News.”
the japan times. (May 29, 2021).
”Tokyo Olympic athletes required to sign waiver over health and heat risks ahead of games”. https://www.japantimes.co.jp/sports/2021/05/29/olympics/summer-olympics/olympics-waiver-coronavirus-risk/(accessed June 6, 2021)
(Even though Hachi heard that not all people in IOC behave in the arrogant way, she simply thought “Huh? What are they talking about? If IOC would not take responsibility, why does it exist?”)
The vice president of IOC, who said the organizers would hold the Tokyo Olympics even when a state of emergency has been declared in Japan, seems to be coming to Japan on 15th June.
People in Japan/Oslo are gradually realizing what IOC is really like.
Added on June 19th, 2021
On June 18th, 2021, 26 experts of infectology and medicine released the paper to the public, the Japanese government, JOC and IOC about their viewpoint on the risks of the Tokyo Olympics.
(The paper seems to be released in English as well.※)
They also held a press conference on the same day at Japan National Press Club to tell people what they were really thinking and how the paper was wrote.
Hachi watched the video from beginning to end. (Accessing primary source is important, especially when it is a tense situation, isn’t it?)
(The list below is the same full movie of the press conference on June 18th, 2021, which is in Japanese.
Each media company has its own tendency, perspective or preference on how it broadcasts the news so that Hachi listed all companies she could find in the order of search engine results for people who are familiar with Japanese.)
(Hachi found that what was going on behind the Japanese strategy of COVID-19: why it went back and forth illogically in the bad meaning, what the 26 experts of infectology and medicine want the Japanese government to do immediately, and perhaps, unfortunately, power dynamics as well.
The expert of infectology was trying to discuss whether the Tokyo Olympics could be held or not, but the Prime Minister of Japan declared Japan would hold the Tokyo Olympics at G7 summit even though he said he had no right to do so at The National Diet of Japan.
That forced the expert to limit what he/she was able to say.
The 26 experts also seemed to work on the paper as volunteers and citizens.
Some of them are the current member of The Japanese government panel of experts on the novel coronavirus as well so that they seemed to discuss what to write or how to express their thoughts at midnight.
The role of citizen in the experts seemed to made them consider all positions (including athletes, citizens and public health) carefully, which was so touching.)
On June 21st, 2021, five organizations are going to hold a conference to decide the upper limit of the audience.
The 26 experts mentioned that clearly in detail.
What are the five organizations?
- IOC（the Olympics Organizer, which decides host town and a schedule）
- IPC（the Paralympics Organizer, which decides events）
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government（Host town, which deicides venues, transportation and infrastructure improvement）
- Japanese Government（responsible for a quarantine, security and communicating with local governments）
- JOC（holding actual events and selling tickets）
This order seems to reflect the privileges. (Corona virus seemed to reveal what IOC was really like and another aspect of the Olympics.)
Hachi does not often have this viewpoint, but now it seems to be clear whose responsibility it would be for public health.
Added on 29th June, 2021
On 27th June, 2021, the paper was released to the Chair of the Novel Coronavirus Response Headquarters, Government of Japan,
to the President of the Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games,
and to the Presidents of the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and the IPC (International Paralympic Committee).
“Recommendations about COVID-19 risks related to holding the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games”
Hachi remembered that 26 experts emphasized that the situation at that time and the possible one in Japan were not told anywhere so that they would try to explain that as professionals and communicate with other organizations.
The paper is addressed to the organizations above, but Hachi thinks it is addressed to all organizations on Earth because what is happening here could be yours in the next moment.
Isn’t that what COVID-19 taught us at the beginning of the pandemic?
Added on July 11st, 2021
The Tokyo Olympics will be in two weeks now.
(Hachi is not writing that with an exciting feeling at all.
She feels it is a wet blanket because the Organizers seem to misunderstand that the Olympics are special.
It only sacrifices ordinary lives of citizens and ordinary flow of other industries for the Olympics, and has made the criteria for the measurement of public health twisted under the pandemic.)
According to AERA.dot (“五輪プレスセンター内で食べ歩きにノーマスク 海外関係者の「ルール破り」に組織委の見解は？”) (in Japanese, accessed on July 11st, 2021), Hachi felt that some press’s behavior are the blind side for the possible mess after the Olympics.
THE PLAYBOOK for PRESS says that press are required to wear a mask, minimize chances to meet Japanese citizens, keep distance when they have a meal, or have a meal at stadiums or in a hotel (in their rooms or at a restaurant in a hotel).
However, some press are speaking at close range without wearing a mask in MPC or IBC, taking the metropolitan bus (or other public transportation), going to McDonalds or bear garden.
(That reminds Hachi of the situation in Cornwall after G7 summit.
“Covid cases in Cornwall above national average for first time” BBC. accessed on July 11st, 2021.)
The Olympic Organizers must be responsible for the blind side as well.
Hachi has read “Félicien Muhitira dropped from the Tokyo 2020 Olympics” (The New Times. accessed on July 11st, 2021).
A Rwandan marathoner dropped from the Tokyo Olympics because he left the camp without permission of his coach and RNOSC, violating the rules, regulations of the training camp and the countermeasures taken to prevent the covid-19 spread as request by Tokyo 2020.
Hachi felt that the decision of RNOSC and the process were true sportsmanship.
An Example of a twisted criteria for the measurement of public health
According to “Olympic test race held in virus-hit Sapporo to ‘ensure safety’”,
“On May 2, 326 new COVID-19 cases were confirmed in Hokkaido, including 246 in Sapporo, both record numbers.”
(The number might be seen not so many from people overseas, but Japanese people didn’t take it that way. Japanese citizens were scared so that the spread had to be stopped immediately. >Why they thinks so?
Also Japan has the history of the harmful side effect of medicines so that many of the Japanese might not get vaccinated immediately.)
On May 5th, The Hokkaido-Sapporo Marathon Festival 2021 as a test event for the Tokyo Olympics was held in the morning.
People who lived in Sapporo were told to stay at home, and not to come to see the marathon race.
People who lived in other prefectures were asked not to visit Sapporo as well.
In the afternoon of the very same day, “Hokkaido Governor Naomichi Suzuki and Akimoto were expected to ask the central government for pre-emergency ‘manbo’ measures for the city”.
Why didn’t they ask the Japanese government for the measurement before the test event?
For whom they work?
The Japanese government did not receive the request immediately because that would make the government admit it did the wrong way.
Hachi/many Japanese people watched the same pattern again and again.
Therefore, they did not trust the Japanese government (or other “authorities”) any more. (of course, it is a shame to say so.)
Even though the article of Asahi newspaper ended up in an optimistic way about the Tokyo Olympics, that was not all stories behind the test event.
2500 citizen runners were not allowed to join the marathon festival in the end.
Hachi heard later that sports day which kindergarten children in Sapporo looked forward to was cancelled and parents could not see their children playing.
Those were what Hachi/Japanese people saw and might not be told.
Also those were some of the examples how the intention to hold the Tokyo Olympics under the pandemic twisted the criteria for the measurement of public health.
Many Japanese people already have sacrificed personal lives under the name of “the Olympics”.
Added on June 29th, 2021
The president of IOC seems to want to visit Hiroshima, and the vice president of IOC seems to want to visit Nagasaki.
Athletes are required to stay in a hotel or a stadium.
Why are the president and the vice president of IOC able to go outside Tokyo?
Hachi has heard that they aim for Nobel Peace Prize. Is that true?
If so, visit there another time personally and arrange your sightseeing plan by yourself, please.
Never ever use its tragedy for your ambition.
People in Japan are still thinking IOC can watch the television in your countries and the Olympics in the pandemic is not safe.
(What do you think about spreading delta variant?)
Focus on your responsibility, and try to understand and feel into the situation in Japan and the situation of spreading delta variant around the world, please.
Thicker line between “authorities” and citizens
The situation right now seems that the line between “authorities”(IOC, JOC, Tokyo Metropolitan Government and the Japanese Government and so on) and citizens is getting thicker.
Hachi had miserable feelings which caused by “authorities” kept ignoring public opinion or picking up only the (twisted) aspects with which they felt comfortable.
Such an experience never happened before: she was in her own country, though.
As a citizen of Japan, all Hachi and more than half of Japanese people want might be ordinary daily lives.
Not hearing the news people who caught a coronavirus died alone at home because there was no place to be hospitalized.
Not hearing the news that the local supermarket became a coronavirus cluster.
Not worrying that each member of a family or someone who you love come back home safely from a school or a workplace.
Hachi is rather introvert so that she does not mind staying inside of a room, but kind of extrovert people, who gain energy from external stimulation, are physically feeling bad under the pandemic or a declaration of the state of emergency.
(Ah, ah. Some people might say that is why we need Olympics, but that is not true. People need to express their own energies.)
Those situations remind many Japanese people of the moment just before Japan entered into WW II or the moment the Japanese army did not admit they lost.
Some people tried to stop or end it based upon the results of research, others became aggressive based upon their own internal viewpoints and their hopes (ego, perhaps). (As you know, the result was miserable from the viewpoint of a citizen.)
Conflict could happen not only between countries, but also between authorities and citizens within a country and among different point of views.
The third alternative of how to use AED
Hachi remembered the lesson from a girl who passed away at an elementary school because of heart attack.
Teachers tried to help her using AED, of course, yet the instruction only asked users whether a patient breathed or not: the instruction did not tell users what to do when they did not know a patient was still breathing or not.
After the parents and the teachers faced a long-term conflict, they figured out their own way: add the third alternative to how to use AED.
Now the updated instruction is everywhere.
It tells AED users “Use AED, when you do not know whether a patient breathe”.
The story tells us we cannot diminish the value of lessons from the past experiences, struggles, sorrow, and, of course, the scientific viewpoint.
We need to take proper measures at the right time to save lives.
(If we compare “AED users” with the Japanese government (Liberal Democratic Party), the Tokyo Metropolitan Government or JOC, and we hope the lesson will be applied to the situation right now, we must make sure first that “AED users” must be someone who takes a situation as it is, not someone who tries to find invalid reasons why a situation happened.)
Power in Moderation
The Japanese government panel of experts on the novel coronavirus seems to be preparing to submit their views on the risks of holding the Olympics to the world.
- REUTERS. June 2, 2021. Adviser frets about Japan Olympics, volunteers reported quitting (accessed June 10, 2021)
- the Japan times. June 3, 2021. Medical adviser frets about wisdom of holding Tokyo Olympics (accessed June 10, 2021)
Hachi feels that many Japanese people are on their side.
When she heard the news, and slightly felt that some people who might not be allowed to speak own viewpoints might express their perspective, she literally cried.
(The feeling is similar to one when she watched the movie coincidently.)
It was because she felt like she learned how to use power, which rarely happen.
It is still hard to put the feeling into the words, but those people seem to be quiet, listen to other people carefully, try to find the middle way and keep things in moderation.
(Also thank you to some media, journals and organizations for representing the voices of Japanese citizens. She learned how the simple but strong action encourages people. Thanks a lot, again.)
Hachi and many Japanese people like sports.
But not this way.
And we need to remember that health is the very foundation of our lives even when we want to move around or want more money.
We are facing the moment coronavirus appeared suddenly in reality and in the midst of learning how to deal with it, prepare for the next phase.
That is also the foundation of our economy.
(Hachi feels that Japan learned that the hard way.)