South Korean pop group BTS took to Twitter to speak out against Anti-Asian hate and to voice out their support for the Stop Asian Hate movement. This is following the increasing cases of hate crimes and racial discrimination against Asians in the United States recently, including the killing of six women of Asian descent in a string of shootings at day spas in Atlanta earlier this month.
On Tuesday, March 30, the group wrote, “We send our deepest condolences to those who have lost their loved ones. We feel grief and anger.”
The Korean music act—composed of Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V, and Jungkook—went on to recall moments when they faced discrimination as Asians.
“We have endured expletives without reason and we were mocked for the way we look. We were even asked why Asians spoke in English,” they said in the statement.
BTS added: “We cannot put into words the pain of becoming the subject of hatred and violence for such a reason. Our own experiences are inconsequential compared to the events that have occurred over the past few weeks. But these experiences were enough to make us feel powerless and chip away our self-esteem.
“What is happening right now cannot be dissociated from our identity as Asians.”
The group noted that it took them “considerable time” to discuss the issue “carefully” and to contemplate how they should express their message.
“But what our voice must convey is clear,” the statement said.
“We stand against racial discrimination. We condemn violence. You, I and we all have the right to be respect. We will stand together.”
BTS received racist comments from German radio host Matthias Matuschik, who compared the group to COVID-19 following their historic MTV Unplugged performance. The group was also depicted in a caricature by trading card Topps as bruised faces in a Whack-A-Mole game after they lost in this year’s Grammy Awards. Matuschik and Topps apologized to BTS.
Several music artists have earlier spoken out against Asian hate happening in the world, including Rina Sawayama, CL, Jackson Wang, and Lea Salonga.
This is a weird week. On Monday morning there was Asian musical excellence personified in @BTS_twt, @HERMusicx, @BrunoMars, and @AndersonPaak among others. And today, there is news on yet another white supremacist gunman that killed 8 people, 6 of whom were Asian. 1/?— Lea Salonga (@MsLeaSalonga) March 17, 2021
Banner photo by Big Hit Entertainment/Released via AFP