Friday, July 22, 2011

Married to US Citizen and Need Green Card? No Prob... Oh! You're Gay???!!!!!

Here's another slap at the United States and the nanny-state nonsense that goes on in that country. ....

At first glance, their life together seems ideal. Rie and Dianne (who have asked that their real names not be used) have a home overlooking a lush garden in a small, caring community. But Rie is Japanese, and even though she and Dianne are legally married in their state, a federal law prohibits her from obtaining a spousal green card. And so their 10 years together have been overshadowed by a struggle to keep Rie in the country. "I've done everything I can. If it comes to the point of deportation, I guess I will just have to go. But to have to leave your family thinking you cannot come back is awful," said Rie. (Japan Times)

In the USA, people are constantly side-tracked from the real problems that the country faces by ridiculous side-shows that go on. I remember many years ago, when the non "issue" of gay marriage was going on in the States, one of my friends wrote to me and asked, "What do japanese people think of the big problem?"

"What big problem?" I answered.

He was astounded. He couldn't believe that the Japanese weren't as up in arms about gay rights as the busy-body Americans are. As if everyone in the world was riveted on the same absurdist nonsense the USA is. As if the entire world revolves around the USA. 

I read the internet news. Of course, I knew about the "problem" of gay marriages and the controversy in the USA. I knew about it. What did I think about it?

I thought, "God! I'm glad I moved away from that busybody nuthouse."

My friend continued with the questioning about what Japanese think of gays. I told him, "What two people decide to do in their own homes is no one else's business. That's what the Japanese think. It is a non-issue."

He was dumbfounded. 

I also added to him that the people in the USA would do much better for themselves if they emulated the Japanese and started minding their own business. I mean, what difference does it make to you or me if Bob and Tony want to get married? Who cares if it is Kenji and Taro? Or who cares if it is Susan and Jane? I hope they are happy. More power to them!

Will allowing gays to marry ruin the sanctity of marriage? Ha! In the USA, a country that has the highest divorce rate in the world, I think allowing gays to get married is the last thing that will ruin marriage.

In this day and age, with the economy tanking, wars all over the world, starvation, environmental problems and problems with energy and food safety, the last thing we need to do is give people a hard time in their search for happiness.

Why doesn't the government of the USA just leave these people alone? 


Anonymous said...

This is a shame. Gays should have complete and total equal rights as all other citizens of the united states.

Anonymous said...

The biggest hurdle that gays have to deal with in the USA is Christian Religion.

Marc Sheffner said...

Reminds of an Andy Capp cartoon. His wife asks, "What do you think of the neighbour's divorce? Some are taking 'er side, and some are taking 'is." To which Andy replies, "And I suppose some weirdoes are minding their own business!"

Murasaki Shikibu said...

In the UK, if you are a non-EU citizen and have been living with another person as his/her spouse (for an x number of years) you are usually at least given the rights to live there. This goes for gay couples as well. You don't even have to be married.

Ceramic tile said...

nice post.
keep writing i follow your blog, want to see more great article

sewardparktech said...

Hey things are changing for the better, people are realizing their mistakes. New York is the latest example.

Fake Name said...

First of all, can you please stop the US bashing? Many people are in favor of gay marriage in the US and things are changing bit by bit. Let's not forget also that the modern Gay Rights movement started in the US.

More fundamentally, what you are describing is basically Don't Ask Don't Tell. As someone who is gay, I can tell you that DADT is very different and far away from actual acceptance. To live with DADT, is like living a closeted life.

From what I have read and what I've gathered from speaking with people in Japan, being openly gay is not common for the vast majority of people. Maybe that is changing with younger generations. But I think your comment is not at all an accurate depiction of what it is like to be gay, either in the US or Japan.

mikeintokyorogers said...

No. It's not "Don't ask, don't tell" at all. It's not important and no one cares whether you like women's breasts or men's. Do as you wish.

Fake Name said...

If you can get more second opinions from actual gay or lesbians about how it is for them living in Japan, then I am open to changing my mind. Not how you perceive it to be.

In the meantime, I'll just think you are one of those straight people who just don't really get it.

Not looking for a sympathy card here, but those are what would be my private thoughts.

mikeintokyorogers said...

Thanks Fake Name.

As the former host of a very famous night time radio show here in Tokyo, I have had the pleasure of having many leaders of what you mistakenly call the the "Gay movement" on my show and am proud to be able to call them "friend." It is safe to say that I had these wonderful folks on my show for years as regular guests.

Besides that, I have close family members who prefer same sex partners. I know what they think. (Duh! I have worked in the music business for over 30 years!!!)

You seem like a troll as you reek of being a fake - especially since you have the weird idea that the "Gay Rights Movement" started in the USA. Complete and total nonsense.... Oh, and it is not commonly referred to as that either, it is usually called, "LGBT"... As in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and transgender movements. That you call it Gay Rights Movement makes me think that you are not gay and merely saying that you are so you can boast your confused position and lack of knowledge on the subject.

There already are people who are leading alternative lifestyles who follow this blog. No one needs to prove to you anything.

They and I certainly don't need to prove anything to you! Trolls go home!

mikeintokyorogers said...

Here is the blog of Shindy Takahashi. A wonderful man who leads an openly alternative lifestyle here in Japan and is one of my very dear friends. He's been very vocal about his life and has been a guest on my show MANY times. Higebouzu.

Fake Name said...

I don't think you have really answered my question - are gay people happy with how they feel they are able to live their lives in Japan? My impression (perhaps wrong) is that a significant proportion live closeted lives. That sucks. That's not being open. That's being DADT. Keep it under wraps, get married, have fun on the side.. Not everyone mind you, but many (i.e. more than NYC). So here I am comparing to Tokyo. As I said, things change, and I have no doubt younger people have a different take on things.

Also, I am not saying there aren't completely openly gay people at all. Of course there are. But you could say the same about everywhere at this point, event notoriously homophobic countries. Also, re: your own perspective on things: creative fields tend not to be a really good barometer of gay acceptance as whole.

Re: I am a troll. Why, because I think your hyperbolic original post is not constructive to having a reasonable/measured/balanced understanding of reality? So be it.

Re: Gay vs. LGBT. This is a quibble. It's like African-American vs. Black. I am not sure why this would make you think I am not gay, or that I am trying to "F**K with you" so-to-speak.

Re: "Gay Rights Movement". Also a quibble. First of all, I said "modern Gay Rights movement". Not trying to score points here for the USA since you may think of me as being US-centric (I do live in the US), but the significance of the Stonewall riots is recognized/appreciated by LGBT communities around the world.

Re: "You don't get it". Well you don't, in the sense that you are not gay, as far as I understand it. Obviously, I am not going to prove that I am gay. Of course, you are undoubtedly a well-meaning gay ally. I am not taking away from that or putting that into question with the above comments.

Back to the original post, what is the record on gay rights/gay acceptance in Japan? Quick search on Wikipedia results in what seems like a closeted/unrecognized existence for many. There may be positives to this. People can just live quietly in their closet and don't fear getting beat up. In the worse case, they can get married and live their gay lives on the side.

I don't know. But one thing I do know, is that when I do visit Japan next time, I will make sure to really discuss this with people "in the trenches" so-to-speak.

P.S. "Fake Name" is somewhat trollish, since I know you don't like it when people "give punches" behind anonymity. ;)

Fake Name said...

I am not sure if I just didn't post correctly, or if my comment was not accepted. But I will try again in brief.

1. First of all, let me be clear. I take MOST issue with this statement " It's not important and no one cares whether you like women's breasts or men's. Do as you wish.” You say basically the same in the original post.

Conformity/not sticking out may be viewed and valued differently in Japan than the US, but the US-view would this implies a DADT attitude, which is far different, than actually being open and transparent about this aspect of your life.

With regards to your responses:
2. Gay can be shorthand for GLBT in many situations. That's how I use it, and how you used it in the title of your post.
3. I said "modern Gay Rights Movement". Emphasis on modern. I am not an expert on gay history, but the significance of Stonewall is uncontested. Perhaps I am being US-centric (oops! I live in America).
4. I am not a troll, but someone most impacted by the measures you discuss - i.e. I have a partner who is a foreign national in the US.
5. You're an ally, but not gay yourself. Not the same.
6. In conclusion, I am really curious now to truly know how gay people in Japan feel. I (mostly) have gay friends in Japan, but I am going to probe more about this when I visit next time. Contrary to what might be popular opinion, us gays don't sit around and bitch and moan about our lot in life, even amongst friends.

mikeintokyorogers said...

I think you are right about Fake Name. Sounds like he has more things fake than just his name. He also hasn't the faintest idea what's going on outside his sheltered world. In Japan openly gay people and tranvestites are celebrated stars... They even host their own TV shows on major Japanese networks.

"Are they happy"? What a fool!

-EX pat American gay male loving it in Japan where people respect you for who you are