The ‘salaryman’ culture is slowly taking it toll on the Japanese. A stabbing spree at Tokyo famous Akihabara today killed three peoples and injured at least 17 others.
The latest report by Times estimated a total of 17 people were injured in the attack, which coincided with the peak of the “shoppers’ paradise” period – a favourite day on which the streets of Tokyo’s famously animated Akihabara district are pedestrianised and attract many times the usual numbers of visitors.
It was into those busy streets that the 25-year old killer drove a lorry apparently rented for the purpose. Weaving across the road to cause maximum panic and confusion, he ran several people down before leaping from the vehicle and slashing at the crowds with a hunting knife.
The ages of three of those killed in the spree – men aged 19, 47 and 74 – attests to the wide popularity of Akihabara – a maze of shops, games arcades and restaurants that draws everyone from teenage video game and comic book obsessives to elderly ham-radio fanatics.
Japan is gradually coming to terms with what many now believe may be a crisis among the country’s younger generation.
Japanese in their 20s use blogs and internet message boards to describe a growing pessimism over the future. They do not want to follow their parents into the drudgery of the “salaryman” life, but have only limited prospects beyond that. It is a generation where suicide rates are also troublingly high. One
A commenter, by the name of Chris described life in Japan as;
“… the mind-numbing system that forces people to conform and obey. People live and work like ants in an ant colony. Stuffed into trains like sardines to work 12 -16 hours a day. Pitiful. Yet, like sheep, they never complain. Just kill themselves or others. A pitiful society.