On February 14th, Kakumei-teki himote doumei (革命的非モテ同盟) — literally, “Revolutionary Alliance of Men That Woman Are Not Attracted To”– will gather in Shibuya, an area of Tokyo popular with young couples, to protest Valentine’s Day and its roots in what they call “romantic capitalist oppression.”
The group, known as Kakuhidou for short, was started in 2006, when its founder, Katsuhiro Furusawa, returned home one day after being dumped by his girlfriend and began reading the Communist Manifesto. He quickly came to the realization that being unpopular with girls is a class issue.
Since then, the group has held several demonstrations each year, all coinciding with holidays that are associated with romantic love in Japanese culture, such as Valentine’s Day, Christmas, and White Day .
Kakuhidou’s slogans combine Japanese internet culture with classical Marxism, and its origins in cyberspace can be charted through its choice of language. For example, one frequent target of the group’s admonitions are the so-called “riyajuu” (リア充）, a neologism frequently used in online communities such as 2chan to refer to those who experience fulfillment in their offline lives (riyajuu is a portmanteau that combines “real” with “jyuujitsu”, the Japanese word for fulfillment).
The release posted on Kakuhidou’s website for this year’s anti-Valentines parade says “the blood-soaked conspiracy of Valentine’s Day, driven by the oppressive chocolate capitalists, has arrived once again. In order to create a brighter future, we call for solidarity among our unloved comrades, so that we may demonstrate in resolute opposition to Valentine’s Day and the romantic industrial complex.”
At previous events, leaders of the group have yelled slogans such as “I hope all riyajuus explode! But we’re still a little jealous!” while wearing shirts that say, roughly, “sex is useless.”
There is more here. By the way, the group’s official vehicle is a Mercedes-Benz.
For the pointer I thank Andrea Castillo.