BTS Meets President Biden at White House To Discuss Surge in Anti-Asian Hate Crimes

Closing out AANHPI month.

Music
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K-pop group BTS made a visit to the White House on the final day of AANHPI heritage month to discuss the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes across the U.S.

BTS met with PResident Joe Biden to address the issues of “Asian inclusion and representation” and to utilize their platform “as youth ambassadors who spread a message of hope and positivity across the world.” All the members of the K-pop group were invited to speak at the press conference in the White House. RM first spoke at the conference to introduce the group and the topic of discussion, “[It is] a great honor to be invited to the White House today to discuss the important issues of Anti-Asian hate crimes, Asian inclusion, and diversity.”

Jin and Jimin followed by acknowledging the month stating, “Today is the last day of AANHPI heritage month. We join the White House to stand with the AANHPI community and to celebrate. We’re devastated by the recent surge of hate crimes including Asian American hate crimes, to put a stop [to] this and support the cause we’d like to take this opportunity to voice ourselves once again.” Suga reminded the audience that it is alright to have differences but reiterates that “equality begins when we open up and embrace all of our differences.”

According to the FBI, in 2020, there has been “a 77% increase in crimes and violence directed at people of Asian decent.” At least 9,000 incidents were self-reported to the Stop AAPI Hate group between March 2020 and June 2021. In March 2021, a gunman killed eight people, six of them were Asian women, in and around several spas in Atlanta. BTS and their fanbase have supported many social causes across the U.S. including raising $2 million USD for Black Lives Matter. The group has also been a pillar in the Asian arts community becoming the first Asian act to win artist of the year at the 2021 American Music Awards. They were also nominated for best pop duo/group performance at this year’s Grammy’s.

Watch BTS’ full speech from the White House press conference below.

Elsewhere in music, Kanye West has hopped on Vory’s new single “Daylight.”

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