Editor: I hope you had a great day giving thanks with loved ones yesterday.
Much to my surprise the post I wrote on the day before Thanksgiving about 88 mayors demanding more refugees went off-the-charts viral, so if you didn’t see it, check it out.
And, thank you dear readers for continuing to follow RRW and special thanks to the donations from many of you that have made it possible for Refugee Resettlement Watch’s renewed presence on the internet.
On a trip to Japan a few days ago Pope Francis learned first hand that Japan steadfastly maintains that it wants to keep its unique language and culture and not become a multiculty polyglot nation as so many European nations have become.
From the New Hampshire Union Leader:
Pope’s message of openness to refugees prompts backlash in Japan
TOKYO – A visit to Japan by Pope Francis and his dream of a nuclear-free world drew largely positive headlines this week in Japan. But when he tried to gently encourage the Japanese to extend a hand of friendship to refugees, the backlash on social media was significant.
Japan has some of the toughest policies toward refugees and asylum seekers among the world’s richest nations, and a reputation for being relatively closed toward outsiders.
The pope’s effort to preach a more accepting message was not universally accepted.
The story was one of the most read on the TV Asahi website on Tuesday and Wednesday and tweets with the words “accept refugees” were trending.
But the response seemed more negative than positive.
“Do that first in the Vatican,” tweeted @Ryounagasugi7, a tweet liked by 14,600 people and retweeted 4,700 times.
“I am sorry. We’ve seen how European countries have failed terribly. Even so, do you still say that? First of all, we are not a country where Christians are dominant. Would you please ask other ‘Christian countries’? Such as America, or America, or America,” tweeted @no_problem666.
Response by a bunch of No Borders activists: Shut down the refugee-phobia on Twitter!
After seeing the flood of negative comments, a group of volunteers who support asylum seekers detained at a facility in Ushiku north of Tokyo called on Twitter to act.
“Tweets that would inflame refugee-phobia, xenophobia are growing, @TwitterJP should deal with it as its own platform has been used to inflame xenophobia,” they wrote on their account @freeushiku.