immigration

Barack Obama inadvertently galvanizes anti-immigration sentiments in Japan

Confusion broke out online in Japan recently as people weren’t sure what to make of a comment uttered by US President Barack Obama on 25 November. During a speech regarding immigration reform in Chicago he cited Japan as an example of a country which doesn’t “have problems with certain folks being discriminated against.”

In Obama’s mind, the remark must have been an innocuous comment meant to lighten the crowd. Little did he know that it would wind up mentioned in the Japanese press and through a chain of misunderstandings would lead some to comment: “Look at that. So he admits the evils of immigration after all!” It’s as if Aaron Sorkin wrote an episode of Three’s Company.

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Campaign against pick-up artist who harasses women gathers global momentum

Recently, we reported on professional pick-up artist/dating coach Julien Blanc, who has begun to attract the public’s attention worldwide after a video was uploaded showing him seemingly choking, grabbing and harassing women in Japan, and conducting seminars teaching others his methods. A campaign to block Blanc’s actions was swiftly set up by twitter user @JennLi123 with the creation of the hashtag #TakeDownJulienBlanc and a petition on Change.org helping to raise awareness.

As of this writing, the original petition has 45,829 signatures, and backlash has forced Blanc to cut short his Australian tour after multiple venues cancelled his events. Now, concerned residents of other countries on Blanc’s tour itinerary (including Japan) have begun to take action, as well.

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US Department of State announces lucky winners of green card lottery

The US Department of State announced on its website the number of people from each region chosen for their 2013 visa lottery program, also known as the green card lottery. Those lucky enough to be chosen will then go through the application process to receive a visa granting them permanent residency in the good old US of A. Read on for more details about the lottery and to learn which parts of the world received the most visas.

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