On proper names, or the invisible disabled people in Japan

I don’t usually write editorials on this website, I prefer to just share articles about disability issues in Japan.

However, whilst writing my e-book about disability discrimination in Japan, I have come across what you might call a ‘name problem’.

Despite his name being widely reported it seems wrong to me report the name of the accused in the Sagamihara stabbings; where disabled people were killed since that matter is now sub judice. And the names of the majority of victims who were killed have not been disclosed.

Similarly an intellectually disabled woman in Miyagi Prefecture who intends to sue the Japanese government over her being sterilized under he ‘Eugenic Protection Law’ has asked to remain anonymous.

All of which maybe right and proper perhaps but I wish we could know the names of those involved. For example, I can’t shake this suspicion that were the victims in the Sagamihara non-disabled, then we would know their names.

Disabled people in Japan will continue to be invisible if we can’t know their names.

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