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Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2005

VIEWS FROM THE STREET

Do you care about the issue of imperial succession?


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Yumiko Nagata
IT sales, 35
To be honest, I don't need them. What do they do? It's kind of like they are our symbol, but I really don't care. We are really thinking about the next emperor at the minute. I feel sorry for them because they don't have any freedom.

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Steve Driscoll
Director of studies, 33
I think probably they serve the same function as the British royal family -- interesting for gossip. I'm sure some people really do love them, but I'm not sure anyone thinks they are serving any function other than perhaps as a figurehead.

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Akiko Hamaoka
Office worker, 29
We still respect what we have done and are doing in history and they are the symbol of the past and to show the outside that tradition is still alive in Japan. They are symbols, so if they stay as symbols then I think it's okay.

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Mai Iguchi
Student, 23
Of course, I think so. Because we still have strong tradition in Japan. Actually, in Tokyo many things are changing very quickly. I think the royal family are important to balance modernization with history and tradition.

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Daisuke Senzaki
Engineer, 24
It's a Japanese institution so it's necessary. We hope the emperor's family will continue forever. But the family costs too much. If we stopped having royalty, we could use their land to make good buildings like the World Trade Center.

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Boon Hoh
Events coordinator, 27
Well, you can have a society with nothing but the bare minimum but it doesn't enrich the people. The imperial family is regarded as a representation of their god. It bonds people together and gives a common culture.



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