Last week I stumbled on an interesting article, the title said;‘Yakuza cancel Halloween trick-or-treat event for kids.’ Because of the interesting title I started to read the article. And it gave me a total new insight of how the Japanese Mafia function in the Japanese society.
Halloween with the yakuza
The Italian Mafia
The general image that I have from Mafia, comes from the stories that I read from the Italian Mafia. They terrorize shop owners to pay protection money, they have the ownership of all the waste belt so they can get rid of everything, but also get rid of everything on not so an ecological way. They are rather feared, and people try to stay away from them as far as possible.
A part of society
But reading this article makes me change this image of the Japanese Yakuza. according to this article they are a important participation part of the society. They organize festivals, and events that are open for the general public, not only group members. They even take sometimes a real visible role in the neighbourhood. These ‘goodwill events’ make them loved by the neighbourhood, what a good way is to not be marginalized by the community.
Even if they do activities that are illegal they have trust and support from those people around them because of these goodwill activities they organize. This double-faced character is something I never imaged would exist. Reading some of the comments of the article confirm this way of how the Yakuza function in society.
Happiness and safety
For one thing I’m happy. they acknowledge they are having internal problems. Because they can not guaranty the safety of the event because of these problems, they decided to cancel it. Good thing they also think about the kids in an other way than keeping them happy, they also want to keep them save,