43°
UMass Boston's independent, student-run newspaper

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

2-26-24 PDF
February 26, 2024
An inside look at Bobby B. Beacon’s insides. Illustrated by Bianca Oppedisano/ Mass Media Staff.
Bobby's Inside Story
February 26, 2024

Learning English and About News From Home

 

Shiho Enomoto is a senior and an English major with a minor in communications. She moved from Japan to the US six years ago but is still very tied to her country of origin (her family still lives there).

Enomoto described how she went about getting information about the crisis in Japan. “I mostly go to Japanese websites and newspaper websites. Also, I go to the Japanese Red Cross Website too.”

Enomoto went on to describe Japanese media. “In Japanese media they only show [stories like], ‘there is no food in the super market,’ or , ‘there was a tsunami like three days ago.’ They don’t show new things all the time. They show bad scenes and things I already know about. So, I use different sites [such as the Japanese Red Cross website].”

I asked her more about the kind of coverage that is coming out of Japan. “I’m kind of upset that some governors said stupid things.” She described herself as “offended” by the commentary made by Tokyo’s governor Shintaro Ishihara who said that the earthquake and tsunami were “divine punishments” for the Japanese people. Meanwhile, Enomoto cited, there were workers out trying to make sure the nuclear disaster was contained, risking their lives.

“There were a couple people who got [radiation poisoning] while they were working in the water that was effected by the radiation. But the governor doesn’t even go there because it was raining or something. They’ll skip that meeting or something and stay in a nice warm place.”

Enomoto discussed her family’s situation. “My home town is really close to where the earthquake happened. They were hit by the earthquake, but they weren’t hit by the huge tsunami […] Even though [my family is] fine – they’re kind of forced to think they have to do something. So, many people feel depression, feel like, ‘I shouldn’t be having fun right now.’ There are so many people suffering, other people in Japan. Many people feel bad about go out to drink after work.” But, she adds, “they can’t keep constantly donating themselves.”

Enomoto had a lot to say about how Japan was handling the situation. “I really don’t follow the politics so much of what’s going on in Japan. But I think the Japanese are strong when they are in a crisis. They try to be ordered and do something together. Not like ‘I’m going to do something by myself.’ They try to follow the rules […] Right after the earthquake happened everyone was waiting in line, and people weren’t really panicked. So, I’m hoping it’s going to turn around in a really good way.

“I think other countries are really helping,” she added. “Without them I don’t think the Japanese government is doing a really good job. But still it’s working out because of other countries’ help.”

Finally, since Enomoto is one of the main tablers of the Japan Fundraising effort going on at UMB, I asked her to discuss how her efforts are going. “I was a really shy, quiet person. I’d never really done fundraising or events[…] I thought I should do something because that is my country.

“It’s really interesting,” she went on, “because I’ve never met so many people here until now. I feel like my life is changing […] Many people come and talk to me […] I usually don’t say my opinions. Now I’m going to meetings and I see what other people are thinking.” Her fundraising is going to the Japanese Red Cross, and the fundraising is going very well. “When I started there was just me and one of my friends standing there. Then many people started showing up and helping. I was surprised how many people donate ten or twenty dollars.”

Enomoto and her friends are at the table Monday through Friday from 11 to 4.