What's up with Japan's

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What's up with Japan's soft punishments for crimes against young women? This week there have been two remarkable examples.

In the first case, a man abducted a 9 year old girl and held her prisoner in a room of his home for more than nine years. It was reported in the courtroom that girl was fed only once a day, threatened with weapons, and beaten if she stepped outside the taped-down boundary her captor created. The presiding judge said, "The suffering of her family was very grave, and it is natural to impose a severe punishment," before he sentenced the man to 14 years in jail.

In the second, a man struck out and kicked his 3 year old daughter in the stomach when he discovered she'd eaten some dog food. She died the next day. The father was sentenced to 4 years in prison.

Does this point out that the Japanese justice system is too lenient overall? Or that women and girls are not valued? Or maybe it's a statement on something else entirely. I'm not sure but these two criminals got away with nothing more than a slap on the hand for some pretty dire crimes.

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