In recent years in Japan, there are two public crisis events with great influence. The first is the novel coronavirus (SARS) nuclear accident in Japan, which occurred in Northeast Japan in March 11, 2011, which was detected by the 8.4 Richter scale (Japan Meteorological Bureau) and the nuclear accident of the Fukushima nuclear power plant after the chain. Although the causes of the two are totally different, the reactions of all walks of life in Japan are quite similar. Novel coronavirus is not mentioned. This article will restore and analyze some real situations of the new coronavirus spreading in Japan from three aspects, namely, the Japanese government, epidemic information dissemination and Japanese people.
Asahi Shimbun report on the epidemic situation (left); the authors photos of the street view in Motian District, Tokyo (February 27) are all provided by the author
Japanese governments sharp turn
From dont be impatient to policy quick change (since late January 2020)
At the beginning of the outbreak, many domestic friends said that the Japanese were too calm about the outbreak. This calm attitude is closely related to the national character of the Japanese and the initial positioning of the Japanese government.
According to the relevant reports of Asahi news agency, the author summarizes the trend of all levels of government in Japan after the outbreak.
A novel coronavirus detected by pneumonia in Wuhan was published in Asahi news on January 9, 2020. Later, novel coronavirus consultation windows were opened to local residents in Tottori, Yamanashi and Kanagawa. In late January, with the spread of the epidemic, local governments called on local residents to improve their awareness of prevention, and those with symptoms should be treated in time.
In February, the epidemic expanded all over Japan, especially in late February, with the disembarkation of the Diamond Princess cruise tourists, the epidemic began to expand all over Japan. Hokkaido and Tokyo are the most serious. The Hokkaido Government announced on February 28 that the whole region of Hokkaido was in a state of emergency.
Compared with the local government, the central government in Tokyo is a bit slower (in Japanese, dont worry). The novel coronavirus was formally established by the Japanese government in January 30th, and was chaired by Prime Minister Abe Shinzo, Vice Minister of cabinet and Chief Secretary for health and labour, and other state ministers as members of the strategy. The Ministry of non-governmental epidemic response, which is composed of the Japanese doctors Association, was officially established on January 28 two days ago. From January 30 to February 27, the government held a total of 15 epidemic meetings, and on February 25, the basic epidemic policy was formally formulated. In this process, the government has been criticized by the opposition parties and the public mainly as follows.
u25cf Koizumi, as the Minister of environment, twice missed the new pneumonia response meeting, while the ministers of the Ministry of culture and the Ministry of justice and the Ministry of culture respectively missed the meeting. It can be seen from this that there is a lack of communication between various departments and they do not pay attention to the epidemic. The direct consequence is the policy confusion after that, and it is impossible to interpret the policy correctly among all departments.
u25cf the introduction of basic policies lags behind and the meaning is not clear, resulting in confusion on the medical site. There is no consensus between the government and the people. In particular, the policy initially proposed that only the health care center can provide testing. In actual operation, the health care center is short of staff, unable to deal with related problems in time, and finally, there is the phenomenon that suspected patients have no access to testing. This issue has aroused great repercussions in the society. After the discussion in Congress next week, the testing will be included in the insurance scope. Major hospitals will have the right to carry out the testing independently in order to improve the above situation.
In an interview with Kimura Zhengren, an international journalist based in the UK on February 28, Miyazaki, a Japanese epidemic expert, said that the Japanese government has no choice but to adopt such a basic policy. The main reason is that in addition to the above-mentioned government epidemic control and institutional problems, the PCR accounting and detection ability of the National Institute of infectious diseases of Japan is relatively weak, and the public health defense ability cannot be compared with that of the United States and South Korea. At the same time, the number of infectious doctors and the popularization of infectious knowledge are also very insufficient.
u25cf change the basic policy suddenly, causing chaos in all aspects of society. Mainly the following two points.
On the first and the 25th, the Japanese government made a decision on whether to continue the major events by the organizers themselves, but Abe overturned the decision again on the 26th, and suddenly announced to cancel or postpone the national large-scale cultural, sports and other activities. All organizers are extremely passive and tired of coping.
Second, in the afternoon of February 27, Abe announced that the temporary suspension of primary, secondary, high school and special support school students in Japan will begin on March 2. Because the announcement was too sudden, the public was shocked. Many people, as well as professionals, said they could understand, but they were deeply disturbed. Double working families say its too sudden and dont know how to deal with it. Local governments, led by the Kyoto government, directly said they would not accept the decision for the time being, and would implement it after adjustment.
Another reason why the Japanese government has been slow in dealing with the epidemic is that it has over protected personal privacy. Privacy protection is an important embodiment of the protection of human rights in modern Japanese society, which is guaranteed by the personal information protection law officially implemented in 2005. In addition, in 1862, the measles epidemic in Edo (now Tokyo) alone led to the death of about 240000 people. At that time, the government adopted a strong isolation system. Although the final infection was controlled, a large number of people who had suffered from measles were discriminated against for a long time. This also makes Japanese society cautious about the possible discrimination in the epidemic.
Princess Diamond: disorientation (from early February 2020)
The media in many countries are very dissatisfied with the way the Japanese government deals with the Diamond Princess and even think that this way of dealing with it is inhumane. Professor Kentaro Iwata of Kobe University in Japan even publicly criticized the government on this matter on yutube. After the Japanese government responded to its criticism, he deleted this video.
In fact, in dealing with the cruise ship incident, the Japanese government is also bitter, because the initial isolation on the ship was the opinion of the United States (according to NHK report). However, the Japanese government did not pay much attention to the virus itself. At first, it adopted the same treatment as the general influenza, which eventually led to various flaws in the handling of cruise events.
As for the Japanese governments handling of cruise collective infection, Miyazaki mentioned above also believes that Japans domestic medical system for handling infectious diseases is too weak, and the government is afraid of the huge impact on Japans medical system. When handling this issue, it seems to be timid, very negative and helpless. Miyazakas comments slightly defended the government, but they did show that Japans medical system has great defects in the prevention of infectious diseases, and there is a gap with some cities such as South Korea.
What is the public rating for the performance of the Japanese government in the epidemic? Obviously not too high. Judging from the latest survey of the support rate of Andoubles cabinet, the situation is not optimistic. The main reason for dissatisfaction with Andoubles cabinet is that the epidemic situation is not suck.
In February, according to the public opinion survey conducted by ANN (Asahi TV News Network), the disapproval rate of Abes cabinet has exceeded the approval rate
Network media and traditional media in epidemic situation
For the spread of the epidemic information, different media play different roles, the speed of the network media is far faster than the traditional media, but its spread of information has both authenticity and falsity. Real information is fermented by various social media (mainly twitter, line and Facebook in Japan), verified, interviewed and reported by mainstream media, and finally the problem is made public to form public opinion and finally promote the solution of the problem. The most typical problem mentioned above is that there is no door for the detection of suspected patients, which is to solve the problem in the fastest time through the above methods. Among them, the news 23 report of TBS on February 25 was highly praised by scholars of research media.
On the other hand, the rapidity of network information also brings the fast spread of fake news. The two biggest fake news stories are the messages that began to spread in the circle of relatives and friends in early February. On the surface, they have the effect of calming peoples hearts, but in fact, they are selling goods. Another false information said that due to the same materials of toilet paper and sanitary cotton as masks, the supply of toilet paper and sanitary cotton will be in short supply in the next few days. This information causes people to rush to buy corresponding products in major drugstores and supermarkets.
Situation of Tokyo supermarket (left) shot by foreign student Fu classmate on February 28
In this outbreak, we have to mention the group of Chinese in Japan. The outbreak first broke out in Wuhan, China, so the information in the Japanese Chinese community will come earlier, faster and more specific than the general Japanese.
At the same time, domestic rumors quickly spread to the Chinese community in Japan, and then to the Japanese community. The reason why such rumors were quickly believed by the Japanese is precisely because of the recent expansion of the epidemic and the unclear policy of the Japanese government.
In short, in this epidemic, the network media has played a role in quickly communicating information, and it is inevitable to become a channel for spreading false news while disseminating useful information. On the other hand, the traditional media, which still maintain greater credibility in Japanese society, reported the situation of the people in time during the epidemic, urged the non-governmental medical institutions and relevant government departments to solve relevant problems in time, and at the same time, refuted the rumors on the Internet.
Japanese people in the epidemic from the initial calm calm, to the later part of people panic, listen to rumors, rush to buy toilet paper and other items. From this point of view, in the event of natural and man-made disasters, the openness, authenticity, rapidity of information, correct policies and policies of the government, as well as self-judgment are far greater than the role played by the national character. The Japanese often give people the stereotype of politeness, diligence, strong organizational discipline and endurance. Even if such a nation faces the situation of unclear policy direction and untrue information, it will feel panic and lose calm. On February 25, there were even Japanese people fighting in the streets in Yokohama to buy masks.
On February 27, Japanese people lined up to buy masks (left); on February 25, people fighting for masks in Yokohama
In response to novel coronavirus, Tsuda Daisuke, a journalist in the Asahi news, said in a commentary that in order to eliminate the unrest of the people, the epidemic experts and governments have also appealed to the people to be calm when dealing with the rapid spread of the new coronavirus. Even so, there are still a large number of inflammatory conspiracy theories on the Internet every day with no medical basis and very low credibility. The World Health Organization calls this phenomenon information infectious disease and warns that it will increase the difficulty of getting the right information.
From the psychological point of view, the cause of information infectious diseases is peoples excessive uneasiness. In the state of excessive fear and uneasiness, we no longer listen to the opinions of professionals objectively, but attack some imaginary common enemies, and the opinions of experts are difficult to convey to these people. When the balance between sensibility and rationality is broken, professional knowledge will be despised and even lead to the opposition between experts and the public. In such an environment, the Japanese people should be rational. His opinions are not only for Japanese society, but also for the countries that are fighting the epidemic.