A country close to China (the place where the virus started in the first place).
A country where people squeeze into the 27% of land which is habitable (the other 73% is mountainous).
A country which contains the world’s largest city, Tokyo: a huge, bustling, sprawling metropolis containing 37 million people out of Japan’s 126 million.
Who would’ve thought that Japan would have such few coronavirus cases? What is the reason?
If you don’t know about how few patients died from the virus in Japan, I’ll start with some stats.
In the whole entire country of Japan, there have only been 907 deaths (June 5th, stats by statista.com). Now, that is sad, but let’s compare that to the rest of the world. As you probably know, the US has the most coronavirus deaths in the world, with 110,000. Brazil has 34 thousand. Italy has 33 thousand. Going down the ranks, Spain has 27 thousand, Mexico, 12 thousand. Even Russia, the Netherlands, and Peru have more than 5 thousand deaths reported.
So, why the low number of cases in Japan compared to other countries? Let’s break that down.
1.) Japanese People Highly Value Cleanliness
I talked about this in another post as well. Japan is a very clean country. For example, Japanese kids learn to clean their classrooms everyday after school. Elementary kids are seen mopping the floors, wiping the windows, sweeping up the dust, stacking up the chairs. Sorting trash is also heavily valued. Taxis, trains, planes— they are all cleaned unceasingly for the people that ride them.
2.) Japanese People Don’t Shake Hands; They Bow
The virus can spread through touching. People have been called not to shake hands or hug during this time for fear that the coronavirus might spread.
But with Japanese people, they don’t need to be told not to hug or shake hands. They usually don’t from the start! Instead, they bow or wave, as is the custom.
Also, in general, Japanese prefer to have more personal space when talking with others. There is already a natural social distancing in place!
3.) Japanese People are Always Thinking about One Another
Japanese people are very hesitant. Before they say and do things, they first think what people around them will feel, and if that will even slightly change their relationship with another person.
So, a lot of people just stay inside of their houses for fear that they would spread the virus by going out. Going out may result in people losing respect for them, and they would feel great shame.
Japanese are always aware of the people around them, and that might be another reason the virus hasn’t spread as much as in other countries.
Those are my reasons! What do you think?
Also, from today, I am starting to post discussion questions, just so we can talk and get to know each other better!
What’s a fun experience you had last year around this time?
Bye guys! God bless!