I subscribe to the Yomiuri Junior High/High School newspaper. While it is easier than their regular newspaper, it’s still hard for me (or rather I should say, time-consuming) It doesn’t have very much furigana, so I have to look up the kanji that I don’t know.
Anyway, I was reading this article (above.) After the earthquake in March of 2011, a huge tsunami hit the coast of northeast Japan. Many students at Okawa Elementary School died due to the tsunami. Of all the horrible consequences of the tsunami, it is definitely one of the most heartbreaking.
The news article says that the court has decided that the school was not adequately prepared in the case of a tsunami. Money must be paid by the government to the families of the victims.
You can read an article about it in English here:
But the government is appealing. I’ll bet this is making them VERY unpopular as it was a horrific tragedy. And yeah, if those numbskull teachers (May They Rest In Peace) had just gone to higher ground, the children would have been saved (and also the numbskull teachers who died in the tsunami would have been saved.) Obviously nobody wants to die. So the numbskull teachers who were killed were just following the school’s numbskull tsunami plan that the numbskull government had devised.
One good thing about Japan is also its bad thing: It’s a nation of rule followers. That’s wonderful, except when rules SHOULDN’T be followed (as in the case here. Rather than going to the previously chosen designated spot, the school students and teachers should have gone to higher ground, easily doable because there was a large hill/mountain next to them.) I know that hindsight is 20/20. Yet, when one hears reports that students were begging their teachers to allow them to run up the mountain…and the teachers didn’t listen to their pleas…it’s heartbreaking.