Japan names ‘most sexist comment of the year’ - and award goes to female politician

The ‘winner’ made it to the poll for the second time in a row

Shweta Sharma
Thursday 11 March 2021 17:24
<p>Mio Sugita was awarded for Japan’s most sexist comment 2020</p>

Mio Sugita was awarded for Japan’s most sexist comment 2020

Japan named the winner of the “most sexist comment of the year” and the award went to a woman politician with a history of making incendiary remarks about women and members of the LGBTQ community.

Mio Sugita, a conservative MP from the ruling Liberal Democratic party (LDP), ranked ahead of men in the survey with her last year’s statement that “women can lie as much as they like” about sexual violence.

The survey was released on International Women's Day on Monday after people voted in an online survey organised by Noaseps (No to all sexist public speeches), a group of Japanese academics and activists.

The second name was of Yoshiro Mori, former prime minister who was forced to resign from his prestigious position as the president of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic organising committee after he said that “women talked too much”.

The Guardian reported that Ms Sugita’s statements got him 1,995 votes or 33.1 per cent of 6,031 votes polled. Mr Mori secured 1,216 or 20.2 per cent of total votes polled.

The third place was held by Masateru Shiraishi, a member of Japan’s ruling party, for his remark that there will be “no one in the next generation” if everyone became lesbian and gay and if their rights were protected by law.

The poll has been held annually since 2017 to highlight problematic, discriminatory, and gender-related comments made by politicians and public office holders, and to make people's objection to those remarks visible.

Ms Sugita, an ally of former prime minister Shinzo Abe, also appeared as a contender in the 2019 survey but edged out from the top slot by the country’s finance minister who blamed victims of sexual harassment while siding with the accused.

She came in second for her comment that same sex couples “don’t produce children. In other words, they lack productivity and, therefore, do not contribute to the prosperity of the nation”.

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