Global sensation Korean pop group BTS revealed why they personally donated $1 million to Black Lives Matter, which sparked their fans to match their donation.
The seven members of BTS – Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V, and Jungkook – and their label, Big Hit Entertainment, made the donation in June, during the height of protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. In a recent interview with Variety, the group explained their reasons behind the donation.
“When we’re abroad or in other situations, we’ve also been subjected to prejudice. We feel that prejudice should not be tolerated; it really has no place,” Jin told the magazine.
“It was a decision we thought about very carefully: What could we do, as part of our overall message of speaking out against prejudice and violence? We discussed it very carefully with the company and that’s how this came about,” RM added.
The group explained that they do not consider themselves political and the donation was not meant to be something other than a donation.
“Ours are initiatives that any person who wishes to live in a just world would want to pursue. We aren’t trying to send out some grandiose message…It’s about us being against racism and violence. Most people would be against these things,” Suga said.
Around the time the donation was made, BTS posted a simple message on their Twitter account standing with Black Lives Matter supporters in their American audience:
“We stand against racial discrimination. We condemn violence. You, I and we all have the right to be respected. We will stand together. #BlackLives Matter.”
In the next 25 hours after the donation was made, their fans, known as the Army, matched it.
“We always want to do what we can to make it a better world, whether in Korea or elsewhere, and go in as much of a positive direction as we can, whether through our music or charity,” J-Hope said.