"We need a referendum to choose our future."

"We need a referendum to choose our future."

I have studied and researched referendums for 6 years at home and abroad. Now I will talk about my report about it in  Kunitachi Tokyo.

Next week I'm going to fly Australia to research "Gay marriage referendum" which held last year. I add Australian story to usual contents.


"We need a referendum to choose our future."

Recently there is big argue the pros and cons of the holding referendum, not about approval or disapproval changing the constitution.

From a global point of view, referendums are of course used for constitutional matters, for constructing a nuclear power plant, for the anthem and so on. Over 2500 referendums have held since the end of 19 century.

The other hand, Japan have never done a referendum even establishing constitutions. So many Japanese people afraid to hold a referendum. I think because of "missing a referendum" causes an impotent feeling of political power which every people has.

Japan has many problems with politics and bureaucratic. Japanese chose politicians and bureaucrat are Japanese, these facts mean Japanese bring about these problems. Still Japanese can't feel the power of their selves.

If recent prime minister dissolves parliament, next parliament will give rise to same problems. Japanese need feelings of the power of politics which they already have.

I'm sure, a referendum is the best way to feel the power. A referendum use ballot paper same as an election but, on a referendum people choose the matter directly. Usually, turnouts of referendums are higher than elections'.   

I saw the referendums in the U.K, Switzerland, Lithuania and Ireland, I can't say which way is better for them, but they know they decided. They feel the power of the vote.

Japan can avoid the referendum if Prime Minister dissolves the parliament but, Japanese lose the chance to feel the sovereign power which lies with the people.

Although referendums are taken notice of the results, the most important thing is using and feeling the sovereign. 

Date: 27Apr 2018 19:30〜21:30
Place: Lecture room at Kunitachi community center
Fee: 1000 yen

Kentaro Oshiba (Journalist)
Reported on referendums from Germany, UK, Switzerland, Lithuania.
Living in Japan.
Work for TV, Newspapers, magazines, radio. 
Published book "Referendum" from comeya books.

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