A video by a U.S.-based pickup artist has resulted in an internet firestorm.
“At least in Tokyo, if you’re a white male, you can do what you want,” says Julien Blanc of dating coaching firm Real Social Dynamics. He is then seen advising a room full of men to eschew empathy, and advocates instead—with apparent sincerity, and accompanying video footage—grabbing Japanese women, holding their necks, and forcibly directing their heads to his privates.
While the original video has since been made private, an edited, Japanese-subtitled version (see above) was posted to YouTube by user msdoom99 on September 17, and has now received more than 1,000,000 views.
On November 2, outrage by Washington D.C.-based Twitter user Jennifer Li led her to initiate the now-viral #takedownjulienblanc Twitter campaign. She followed up two days later with a video response and a Change.org petition.
In Australia, online and real-world protests resulted in Blanc’s tour of that nation being cut short when his visa was canceled, forcing him to leave the country late November 6. Explaining the decision, Australian Immigration Minister Scott Morrison said, “This guy wasn’t putting forward political ideas, he was putting forward abuse that was derogatory to women.”
Jake Adelstein of The Japan Times notes that under Japan’s forcible indecency laws, the behavior advocated by Blanc is punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
With Blanc reportedly scheduled to appear next in Japan, a bilingual Change.org petition has already been initiated to stop him from entering the country.