Kpop boy band BTS is not ‘just a Korean group’


ABC News, fair use

At United Nations headquarters Sept. 24, BTS leader RM makes a speech of self-love and education. The United Nations hosted a conference for representing the charity campaign UNICEF.

From giving free small concerts in America to representing South Korea in the United Nations, international boy band BTS has caught the globe’s attention; not only with their voices, but with their messages as well.

Debuted as a seven-member KPOP (Korean pop) group, BTS reached their huge noticeability last year during a collaboration with Steve Aoki, both of whom are still communicating for potentially new music.

 Through features on talk shows like “The Ellen DeGeneres Show,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live!,” and “The Late Late Show with James Corden,” and hosting concerts worldwide, the boy band’s fandom has reached millions of followers due to the message in their lyrics such like “I could see the sunshine, cause I’m just fine.”

However, with millions of eyes staring at them, the boy band continuously faces backlash with insults such as people saying they don’t deserve their huge fame and their music does not matter outside of Korea. Although some of this negativity can be ignored, professional news anchors are also part of the hate against the KPOP group that in their opinion is unable to inspire others.

Specifically,  “ABC World News Now’s” Kendis Gibson lashed out against BTS by repeatedly saying they are a simple group in Korean music industry after he saw the speech during the United Nations meeting.

“It’s a bunch of boy bands from Korea. It’s a boy band from Korea telling us how to live life,” Kendis Gibson said.

Several issues were pressed with Kendis Gibson’s statement. Not only was the anchor being unprofessional throughout his statement on live television, but he also diminished the fact BTS was there to represent a charity cause and to express self-acceptance while relating to their own hardships. BTS was not there to tell someone how to live their life, but instead to inspire others that the outcome of finding love is colorful rather than bland.

“I have come to love myself for who I am, for who I was, and for who I hope to become.”

— Namjoon Kim (RM)

With this speech, and the mockery from the popular news anchor, the message they are trying to send gets pushed in the shadows. Upon seeing the video of Kendis Gibson, hundreds of fans went to Twitter to defend the group against these insults which led to various posts on social media to have the anchor fired for his immaturity.

In my eyes, some people have an inability to understand that a group of people who are not American can send hope for a better life. Partially due to the fact that the individuals who only focus on American people would have no care to listen and just speak rather than to look at a different standpoint.

BTS might be a boy band from South Korea, however, their voice is still similar to all the other idols who desire a better change for the world. A language barrier can stand in place, but their words and messages are what makes them connect to people who are willing to understand.

From the perspective of a Korean teenager in America and being able to look at the accomplishments the band has achieved, BTS grew to be more than just a “Korean group.”

BTS started as nobodies with a small company. They faced being called “girly” and other slang because of wearing stage makeup for concerts, while some members were confronted with death threats on social media platforms.

Consequently, throughout all these years, members faced mental disorders and thought they were not good enough for one another.

Despite all the challenges BTS faced, the group still pushes forward through their career, perceiving hope for life in their lyrics and an optimistic message overall.

Because BTS did not just quit, the members inspired their fans not to give up on themselves as well.

Without having face-to-face conversation, BTS holds the ability to change the perspective of a person, just like any other influencer aims to achieve. Not everyone may not be able to fully understand the Korean language, but through the hidden themes in their music videos, anyone can equally enjoy the meanings of the rhythm like a fluent speaker.

BTS may not be an English group, but they are not just a Korean group, either. All seven members can bring the same emotions as a western group.