BTS declares music the “unifier” against hate during Biden’s visit to the White House

Global superstar band BTS visited the White House on Tuesday to celebrate the final day of Asian American and Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

Before their meeting with President Joe Biden, “Butter” singers Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V and Jungkook took turns reading a statement on the rise of anti-Asian hate crimes in the US.

“We have been devastated by the recent spate of hate crimes, including hate crimes by Asian Americans,” Jimin said, translated from Korean. “To put an end to this and support the cause, we would like to take this opportunity to speak out again.”

“We are here today because of our army, our fans worldwide who have different nationalities and cultures and speak different languages. We are truly and always grateful,” added J-Hope.

“We believe that music is always an amazing and wonderful unifier of all things,” continued Jungkook.

“There’s nothing wrong with being different,” Suga explained. “I think equality begins when we open up and embrace all of our own differences.”

BTS in the White House
BTS joined Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, during the daily briefing.

“Everyone has their own story. We hope that today is a step forward in respecting and understanding everyone as a valuable person,” said V.

The band did not answer media questions, and their subsequent meeting with Biden was closed to the press.

“So I can go home and tell my kids BTS is open for me. I didn’t expect it when I woke up this morning,” joked Brian Deese, director of the National Economic Council, who offered reporters comments on the economy after the band left the stage.

BTS in the White House
BTS arrived at the White House on the last day of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

Earlier this month, Selena Gomez visited the White House alongside First Lady Jill Biden to speak on mental health. Paris Hilton also visited to raise awareness of child molestation in residential settings, which she is said to have experienced as a teenager at Provo Canyon School in Utah.

Biden’s administration also previously recruited “Good 4 U” singer Olivia Rodrigo to urge young people to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

BTS in the White House
BTS members, except RM, spoke in Korean on the podium.
Getty Images
BTS in the White House
BTS didn’t take questions from reporters, instead smiling as they exited the room.
Getty Images BTS declares music the “unifier” against hate during Biden’s visit to the White House

Emma Bowman

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