Japan lifts ban on public dancing
After 67 years of not being allowed to dance publicly – unless in a venue with a licence – Japan’s citizens are rejoicing after the restriction was lifted.
Until last week, like Cinderella, all Japanese dancers had to stop their bopping at midnight. The law was enacted after World War 2 because dance halls, which were popular at the time, were rife with prostitution.
Although the law remained on the statute books, it wasn’t thoroughly enforced and police often turned a blind eye to it in the second half of the past century.
However, UK daily The Independent reported, it started being enforced again in the 2000s after a series of celebrity drug scandals and nightclub brawls led to an increase in police raids.
The country’s dancers will again be able to party the night away thanks to Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto, who conducted a campaign calling for the ban to go. It received 150 000 signatures.
The new law was finally passed last week, but will only come into effect next year.
Interestingly, another country that has a ban on dancing is Sweden, where “spontaneous dancing” is illegal and owners of bars, clubs and pubs without special dancing licences can be fined if their customers break out into a boogie.
The country is sticking to its dancing ban though, and a vote in March to scrap it did not pass.
Dancing a night away is legal again