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Global K-pop Supergroup BTS Makes History At White House

Updated: Jun 5, 2022

K-pop sensation BTS visited the White House Tuesday, May 31 to discuss Asian inclusion and representation as well as anti-Asian hate crimes and misinformation. The group was seen during the White House press briefing and will meet President Joe Biden in the Oval Office, without the press.

BTS at the White House (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

Each member took to the podium and spoke -- mostly in Korean -- only the band's leader, RM, spoke in fluent English. The group said, through an interpreter, "we joined the White House to stand with the AAPI community and to celebrate."

"We were devastated by the recent surge of hate crimes, including Asian American hate crimes. To put a stop on this and support the cause, we'd like to take this opportunity to voice ourselves once again," the translator related. "We are here today thanks to our army -- our fans worldwide -- who have different nationalities and cultures and use different languages."


Members of the group were "surprised that music created by South Korean artists reaches so many people around the world transcending languages and cultural barriers." They continued, "We believe music is always an amazing and wonderful unifier of all things."

Full Speech Highlights:

The group will be filming "digital content" for the White House social media channels, according to a White House official.

With the rising tensions in the Asian-American community including last year's shootings at three Atlanta-area spas, BTS has been adamant in giving their own experience with discrimination.

"We recall moments when we faced discrimination as Asians. We have endured expletives without reason and were mocked for the way we look. We were even asked why Asians spoke in English."

They continued:

"We cannot put into words the pain of becoming the subject of hatred and violence for such a reason."

The increase toward the Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) community amid the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in more than 10,000 hate incidents between March 19, 2020, and December 31, 2021.

BTS at the White House (Los Angeles Times)

President Joe Biden has signed a bipartisan bill addressing the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes into law in May 2021. It will create a new position at the Justice Department to "expedite review of potential Covid-19-related hate crimes and incidents reported at the federal, state or local level", according to CNN.

BTS with President Biden (White House Press)

It is not uncommon to invite celebrities to the White House to say a few words about certain issues. But very few of them have been invited to the White House to discuss important matters with the president himself:

Elvis Presley (1970),

Michael Jackson (1984),

Bono (2005)

and now BTS (2022).

Check out this Tweet by President Biden's conversation with BTS!

Here's an updated video of BTS at the White House!

What are your thoughts on this matter? Would you be able to aid BTS in spreading this message? Let us know!


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