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Tuesday, Feb. 19, 2008

VIEWS FROM THE STREET

Should Japan's teachers stand up for the national anthem?


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Kinue Watanabe
'Izakaya' owner
I'm not sure, but I wouldn't stand. Students and teachers shouldn't be forced to stand. We shouldn't think it's wrong that teachers don't stand for a song with so much history.

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Nobutaka Gappa
Sales representative, 32
It depends on the person. If teachers or students think it is linked to bad things, they shouldn't have to stand. The government should definitely not force them to stand.

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Miho Kasuge
Nurse, 28
Standing or not standing, both are OK. Overseas, they always stand for their national anthems. "Kimigayo" is more like the Emperor's song — it's just a symbol.

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James Moth
Teacher, 26 (English)
The anthem shouldn't be taken too literally. In England, even non-religious people sing "God Save the Queen." If teachers feel so strongly, stand up but don't sing.

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Tae Oi
Aesthetician, 28
I think it's better for teachers to stand. They should respect the country. I think the song is connected to the Emperor, but there is no connection to war.

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Naimisha Mehta
Legal aid, 25 (American)
What teachers do influences the minds of students. A teacher should put aside his/her personal differences and stand up during the national anthem.



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