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Constitution Memorial Day: May 3rd

What is Constitution Day?

On May 3rd is Constitution Memorial  Day for Japan.   In Japanese it's called Kenpo Kinenbi.   This day is to recognize the significants of  McArthur's constitution for the Japanese.  On this day you can see demonstrations by conservative and leftwing groups over the interpretation of the constitution and over the need for revision.  One contentious issue is over Article 9 which prohibits an act of war.  Many lawmakers and politicians on this day reflect on such issues as pacifism and the future role of the Japanese military in a quickly changing world.   

In America we also have our own Constitution Day and it  is observed each year on September 17.  This is observed to commemorate the signing of the American Constitution in 1787.    On this day we reflect on U.S. citizenship.   All publicly and federally funded schools are required to teach on the history of the American Constitution on this day!      

Japan's current constitution was signed into law and accepted by the Japanese government as part of a deal that would end America's Occupation of the country and set Japan on track for recovery and Democratization.   The current day constitution is not an authentic document of the Japanese people, but a quick fix with over half the U.S. Bill of Rights written in it.   There's hardly any provisions endorsed by lay Japanese.   Japan's previous constitution had a similar frame work but  because emphasis in the writing placed  too much importance on "kokutai " it had  to be  rewritten  in order to reflect  more Democratic and Christian principles.

Why is it important for Japan?

It is important for a number of reasons.  One is because of the "Kokutai," which is the essence and posterity of the Japanese race.   It's an abstract concept that embraces the spiritual  core and racial identity of the Nation of Japan.    Douglas MacArthur had to remove references to "Kokutei" because it was too emperor-centered and  less Anglo worshiping in nature and thus too cult like and non- progressive for mainstream whites, Washington power brokers,and world leaders.    All vestiges of Japan's nationalism had to be removed from every aspect of Japanese life, education, and tradition.    Even folk music had to be changed.    

Japan has to reflect on its position in the world.   The country needs to re-identify with its role in the modern world not only as an economic partner to the United States, but a potential ally in war, and  possible inclusion on the U.N. Security Council.   In order for major powers to recognize Japan, it must demonstrate that it can make decisions for itself outside of America's influence and prove itself to be a world leader, not just a follower.    This is one major significance for reviewing the present-day constitution.   Japan has to have the sovereign right to authorize the use of deadly force and to participate in war.  

Another reason why it's important is because it is symbolic.   On May 3rd, Douglas MacArthur was reigned in by the Foreign Relations Committee to testify behind closed doors over his dismissal.    Many Americans saw Douglas MacArthur as a potential crackpot when he advocated using the Atomic Bomb on China.   This is a man who disobeyed direct orders and who has constantly jeopardized national security in order to satisfy his own ego.  

For the Japanese, Douglas MacArthur should be viewed as a man who had good intention, but who ultimately sought to destroy the soul of the country by ridding it of it's ancient practices.    In short, destroying the country from within with Christian values, and White worship.      The reason I use the term "White Worship" is because MacArthur stood shoulder to shoulder with the late Showa Tenno.   No Japanese man or woman has ever met Tenno Showa's gaze, yet a white person did so as a symbolic gesture to show the Japanese race MacArthur's power.    This is disgraceful and shows the total lack of respect for a person whom all Japanese revere as a living god.  

The first Parliamentary government formed in Asia occurred in Japan.  The Meiji Constitution had clear limitations on the power of the executive branch and the Emperor of Japan.  It also had an independent judiciary which afforded civil liberties and even Civil rights.  As with all laws in the world, such civil liberties were ambiguous and subject to interpretation.   The Four Freedoms of America, for example.  Many Americans would mock it today as being  hardly representative of American Democracy.    On May 3rd, the Birmingham Campaign in the south was in full swing in the United States.    Black Americans were being beaten, shot and killed by white police officers.   Why?   Because they marched peacefully  demanding  just basic Civil Rights.   All this was happening  all while the American government  was guaranteeing these same rights to Japanese people.     

In order for any constitution to have merit, it must be shrouded in idealism and divine right.   The American constitution is thought to be inspired by higher principle founded in small part by the Christian Bible, and that god ordained America to lead and shape the world.   The Japanese constitution was also shrouded in mystery  under Kokutai which led to the promulgation of Japanese national myths in the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, which deified the Emperors of Japan as the descendent of the sun goddess.  .   

 Lincoln and Abraham are honored as men of principle and high honor, almost given godlike status by many zealous patriotic Americans because of their contribution to shaping America, yet these men were slave-owners who had slave mistresses and were not always the best example to model socially and morally upright men after.  Honor and principle are left up to interpretation, as long as you were white American back then.

The Japanese have to regain a sense of national identity  as an independent body politic free from the strains of Western idealism.   Japan's original  constitution pre-dates America's Constitution by a almost a millennium, so there's no misunderstanding here that Japan fully capable of writing its own constitution without the United States.   To read up on an in-depth essay on MacArthur click.

I do believe Mr. Abe is moving in the right direction with his desire to modify the current day constitution.   One that hopefully reflects the needs of the Japanese in this increasingly unstable world.
Let's hope for the best!

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