March 30, 2017

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Kenichiro Mogi: “Balus!”

Neuroscientist Kenichiro Mogi gave a unique performance during the rally in front of Parliament on September 4. He sang a parody of an advertisement for radio station Tokyo FM. This performance was inspired by the deceased singer Kiyoshiro Imawano. After he sang the song, he asked the crowd to say “balus,” to which he responded “the security legislation.” The phrase “balus” comes from a spell in the 1986 animated movie Laputa, by Hayao Miyazaki. At the end of the movie, when the leading characters Sheeta and Pazu say “balus,” the castle in the sky is destroyed. There is a movement online called “Security Legislation Balus” led by an opponent of the security legislation, and Mogi seemed to integrate this movement’s catchphrase into his performance.

Below is the text of his speech and song:

I actually have a law degree, and I can understand that for a law to be unconstitutional is a big deal. Professor Hasebe [one of the scholars who opposes the legislation] used to be a professor at Tokyo University [the most prestigious university in Japan]. Parliament passed the legislation despite such a scholar claiming it is unconstitutional. I cannot believe that they passed the legislation ignoring such people’s opinions even though Parliament is a place where experts of law are gathered. I thought that making a speech would not help much here, so I also prepared a performance. [Looking up the sky] Kiyoshiro, are you watching us?

スクリーンショット (775)

The Security Legislation. Rotten Law.

The Security Legislation. Horrible Legislation.

They ram through whatever they want.

The Security Legislation. Doing things just as America orders.

Definitely must be abolished.

They say scholars cannot decide the constitutionality of the legislation.

Then, who can decide?

Former judges of the Supreme Court are saying that the legislation is unconstitutional.

Don’t you think that they are more trustworthy?

Oppose the Security Legislation, Support Humans!

Oppose the Security Legislation, Support Freedom!

Oppose the Security Legislation, Support SEALDs!

Oppose the Security Legislation, Support Democracy!

After I say “security legislation” please say “balus!” to the Parliament.

Security legislation! [the audience replies “Balus!”] Thank you.

(Source: Independent Web Journal)

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