火論:幼い目が見ている=玉木研二

(Mainichi Japan) September 13, 2011
Children's watchful eyes see though prejudice
火論:幼い目が見ている=玉木研二
 <ka-ron>

There is a traffic light for pedestrians just outside one of the exits at Jimbocho Station on the Tokyo Metro subway system.
 東京都営地下鉄神保町駅のある出口を出ると、狭い道ながら歩行者用信号機が付いている。

Even if no cars are seen nearby, most pedestrians strictly observe the signal because of a nearby signboard that says, "Children are watching your behavior." The notice appears to be effective.
車影が全くなくとも信号を守るのは看板の言葉の力ゆえだろう。これは効く。

 <子供が見ています>

It is painful to cover accidents and incidents in which children are victimized.
 子供が巻き込まれた事件事故を取材するほどつらいことはない。

It would be horrifying to imagine what would happen if children saw adults ignore the traffic lights and themselves did the same thing.
この信号無視を幼い目が見てまねしたら、と想像するだけで足はすくむ。

It is important to feel children's watchful eyes in considering the government's slow response to the ongoing crisis at the tsunami-hit Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, as well as over groundless rumors about radiation contamination and some adults' insensitive behavior, such as the former economy, trade and industry minister's nuclear gaffe, which forced him to step down.
 福島の原発事故災害で後手に回った対応のほか、根拠のない風評や心ない言動の対策を考える時、常に子供の視線を感じ取っていたい。
「放射能をつけたぞ」という趣旨の発言などで引責辞任した前経済産業相の問題では、それを強く感じた。

The minister's remark reminded me of another gaffe during a Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly session in July 1976 when a medical expenses subsidy system for the offspring of hibakusha, or atomic-bombing victims, was up for deliberation.
 この問題は35年前の東京都議会のある「放言」も想起させた。1976年7月、被爆2世への医療費助成制度などを審議していた委員会でのことだ。

A member of the assembly asked the metropolitan government if there was any way to "exterminate" hibakusha, which created a stir in the chamber.
質問に立った中堅議員が「被爆者の絶滅の方法はないか」とただして議場を驚かせた。

A representative from the executive branch of the metropolitan government answered, "We'll continue to work seriously to extend relief to survivors," before closing the session.
都は「今後も援護に取り組んでいきたい」とかわし散会したが、当時の記事によれば、記者が議員に聞くと、こう語った。

In response to questions by reporters, the assembly member said, "If the number of hibakusha continues to increase, it may include those who took over the disease from their parents through heredity or those who falsely reported they are hibakusha," according to news articles at the time.
 「被爆者が今も増える傾向にあるとすれば、遺伝によるものか、虚偽の届け出も含まれているのではないか」

"For now, hibakusha should be allowed to receive treatment but they should be advised through administrative directives to refrain from having children until they have recovered completely," he said. He explained that such a measure would be good for the fiscal health of the nation.
「さしあたって被爆者には治療を続けさせ、完治するまで子供を持たないよう行政指導すべきだ」。その方が財政にかなっているというのだ。

The number of those who held hibakusha certificates actually increased in the 1970s and 1980s after applicants increased over that period. It has been pointed out that hibakusha became less worried about prejudice because they retired from jobs, their children found jobs or married and overall social prejudice against hibakusha had declined.
 被爆者健康手帳取得者が70年代から80年代にかけて増えたのは、自らの定年、子供たちの就職や結婚、偏見の軽減など、生活環境の比較的落ち着いた状況が要因の一つではないかといわれている。

I'm the son of a Hiroshima hibakusha and started my career the year before the gaffe at the metropolitan assembly. I was surprised at his remarks, which reminded me that people who thought that way still existed.
 私は広島の被爆者の子供で、この「放言」の前年に就職したが、もはやこのような発想をする人がいようとは思わなかった。いたのである。

Hiroshima and Nagasaki hibakusha had been forced to live in a gutter between longstanding information control during the U.S.-led post-war occupation and social prejudice.
 広島、長崎の被爆者は、戦後占領期の長い情報統制と偏見の谷間に放置された。

There had been no organized campaign demanding relief for hibakusha until anti-atomic and hydrogen bomb movements began after crewmembers of the tuna fishing boat Daigo Fukuryu Maru (Lucky Dragon No. 5) were exposed to nuclear fallout from U.S. hydrogen bomb testing.
54年に核実験の「死の灰」を浴びた第五福竜丸事件で原水爆禁止運動が始まるまで、組織化されることはなかった。

There was deep-rooted prejudice that radiation could be infectious. Many hibakusha have been denied entry into public baths because of that prejudice.
 「うつる」「伝染する」という偏見は根強かった。例えば銭湯で入浴を断られたという体験は、かつて多くの被爆者が持っていた。

The former economy, trade and industry minister apparently did not use the phrase "radiation infection" to that effect. However, his insensitive gaffe has reminded many people of their sad experiences, even if they do not speak out about that.
 前経産相が「うつる」などという言葉をそういう意味で理解して使ったとは思わない。だが、その「失言」から伝わる無神経さに、いや応なく悲痛な思い出や、底なしの闇がのぞいたような気持ちをよみがえらせる人々がいる。声を上げずとも。

Simply replacing the minister will not lead to any fundamental solution to the issue. The mental capacity of politicians is being tested.
 閣僚ポストの異動で解決することではない。何が一番必要か。あえていえば「想像力」だろう。

(By Kenji Tamaki, Expert Senior Writer)
(専門編集委員)

毎日新聞 2011年9月13日 東京朝刊
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by kiyoshimat | 2011-09-15 02:19 | 英字新聞

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