The situation seems to keep moving from bad to worse in Japan. Currently, 2,800 are confirmed dead, over 2,000 bodies have washed up on the shores of Miyagi prefecture, and the Fukushima’s #1 power plant appears to be in danger of a meltdown. Explosions occurred at Power Plant units 1 & 3, due to hydrogen ignition. The government is stating that they suspect partial meltdowns have already occurred at these facilities. Earlier today, Shinmoedake erupted, creating the largest volcanic activity in Japan in 53 years. Survivors are facing a night without food, heat, or water. In a nutshell, this chain of events is the worst disaster to befall the nation in the 63 years since the end of WWII.
Still, only a few days later, the situation is far from grim. Yesterday, I mentioned that the entertainment industry was beginning to show support for the victims of the quake. It seems that the sentiment is spreading at a blistering pace.
In the music industry, heartthrob rocker Gackt launched the Show Your Heart charity drive, which will collect donations for the Red Cross. Idol group AKB48 also announced that they would be starting a charity fund for earthquake victims, and made a request for donations on their blog. In addition, over 50 Japanese music artists, from Nami Tamaki, to Ai Haruna and Kenichi Kaneda posted messages of support across Twitter, across their webpages, and across a hurting nation.
In the video game industry, donations have been rolling in from major players. In particular, the current breakdown is as follows:
Nintendo announced that they will donate ¥300 million
Sony announced they will contribute ¥300 million and 30,000 radios
Sega Sammy announced that they would donate ¥200 million
Namco Bandai announced that they will contribute ¥100 million
Koei Tecmo announced that they will give ¥100 million
In the anime industry, the kind words and supportive wishes continue to roll in. Last night, Dragon Ball creator Akira Toriyama posted a message of support to the victims and Kodansha’s Morning magazine website posted illustrations with messages of support from the magazine’s manga creators. Viz Media released a message of support for the victims of the tragedy.
In Japan proper, reports are coming through that the country as a whole is putting on a strong face. While the situation seems bleak, the people are still refusing to be overcome by the disaster.
It appears that the giants of Japanese culture are beginning to come together. The resilience of humanity is being shown across the country, as they struggle to weather the challenges ahead, in the face of aftershocks, potential meltdowns, and further trials. The going will be difficult going forward, as people struggle to rebuild and return to their once-peaceful lives. However, there are many who are eager to help, and even more who offer their deepest support.
To those who are trapped in shelters or trying to find your way home, please… stay safe.
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