Tokyo, Japan — They’re cute, clean, and relatively quiet, and they have the fad-hungry Japanese going crazy. A growing craze for Democratic presidential candidates is an obsession among teens in Japan, who collect and trade the many politicians with glee.
12-year-old Ikuko Yumiko traded her Al Sharpton and Dennis Kucinich for Joe Lieberman, after borrowing the former vice-presidential candidate from a friend.
“I had to have him when he started telling me why NAFTA was a positive step taken by America to increase economic opportunities at home,” she explains. “It was the cutest thing I’ve ever seen in my life.”
Teenagers say that the presidential candidates are a symbol of status, and that the most desired Democrats are difficult to obtain. Meanwhile, several schools are banning their students from bringing their treasured candidates to classes.
“This isn’t a Pokemon Pikachu, this is a real living person,” school administrator Keiji Eki said. “I appreciate that young girls are eager to learn about responsibility, but it’s clearly a distraction from learning when a lovable candidate passes out in class because its owner forgot to feed it.”
At least one of the presidential hopefuls have died as a result of poor care by its owner. Bob Graham was found dead outside a young girl’s home after he was stranded in a yard for several days. The girl and her family had taken a vacation to Tokyo Disney and had simply forgotten about the candidate.