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Lolicon Backlash in Japan

posted on 2005-01-13 16:30 EST
Non-Profit Organization Insists on Regulation of Depiction of Minors in Adult Entertainment

There has been significant public outcry in Japan following the kidnapping and murder of an elementary school girl in Nara, Japan and the arrest of a suspected lolicon for the crimes.

CASPAR, a Japanese non-profit-organization founded in 1989, is campaigning for regulation regarding the depiction of of minors in pornographic magazines and adult video games. Caspar states that it has been collecting sample material for several years.

Caspar founder Kondo Mitsue states, "For 5 or 6 years we have been collecting material, and the so called bishoujo adult anime magazines and bishoujo adult anime simulation games are terrible. Grown men manipulate childlike little girls, themes of turning them into slaves to have one's own sexual desires fulfilled being very common. "

According to Kondo the characters of these games and magazines are often clearly meant to be elementary aged school-children.

Producers of the lolicon and bishoujo material often argue that the Japanese constitution guarantees their freedom of expression in this matter and that laws restricting these materials would be unconstitutional. Kondo however counters this stating that "The utmost priority of the constitution is to guarantee fundamental human rights. I believe the freedom of expression does not allow for the depiction of little girls being violently raped, depriving them of their basic human rights."

She states that there is no country in the world that pays as little attention to Child Pornography as Japan.

CASPAR has collected 7,000 signatures on a petition to have the Japanese legal code revised in respect to virtual child pornography. In addition, 16 member of the Diet and several members of congress have pledged to support such measures.

Kondo founded CASPAR in 1989 after learning of the child prostitution issues in Thailand. The organization has built around 20 schools for children in Thailand and the Philippines. It was officially recognized as a legal non-profit-organization in 2003 and has 770 members nationwide. CASPAR believes that child prostitution and child pornography have common roots and that by regulating child pornography, the fight against child prostitution will be aided.

In 2002 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a 6-year-old law banning virtual child pornography. The subsequent "Child Obscenity and Pornography Prevention Act of 2002 banned only virtual images that are indistinguishable from real child porn, and prohibits all obscene pornographic images of prepubescent children.

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