BY JOE YOKOMIZO | 2016/02/09
I have been organizing the annual Halloween event. There are other interesting events like in Shibuya recently. Some people are against these events, but I think we cannot stop anymore. From my experience organizing the Halloween events, I think Japanese feel that Halloween is important. So, I think they should not be stopped but instead do the parade in divided streets for three blocks like the American Halloween events. I don’t know which authority has the power to control, but the government should control these events to prevent unnecessary troubles. Right now, citizens managed by themselves but it should be the government.
There are a lot of wastes after the event, but this also means people buy so much stuff. It shows a high potential for positive economic impact through the Halloween event. So why don’t we see this not in a negative way but as a positive opportunity? If there are a lot of wastes, why don’t we set up more garbage bins and hire people who can take care of it? That way, local government can benefit from the events. On the beaches in USA, we can find garbage bins every 10 meters. Even in Japan, we see more garbage bins during festival seasons. If the local authority could manage the events for huge parade, I think it would not be chaos like this. In addition, if the government sends out official notice about the event, it would prevent traffic jams, unlike the recent event.
I think, overall it leads to economic improvement. However, there are people who do not know the meaning of the event but claim Halloween is a childish festival or question the real meaning or origin. I would like to ask, how many people understand well the meaning of Christmas? I wonder how many Japanese even know well about the meaning of Obon (1). It is just non-sense. It may take time to accept new culture. It is like there are still people who question why Japanese celebrate Christmas even though they follow Buddhism. It is fine, but my point is that if the local government could manage the event officially like the other festivals, I think it would be a great fun event like Hanami and Fireworks festivals. Right now, the registration has not reached the same level yet, although there is a high potential.
HALLOWEEN JUNKY ORCHESTRA(2011)
(1) Obon; Japanese Buddhist custom which their ancestors' spirits come back to their homes to be reunited with their family during Obon and pray for the spirits. (http://www.japan-guide.com/e/e2286.html )
Translation by: Yumi