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BTS is going to the White House next week to discuss Asian representation

Seven men posing on a red carpet in alternating brown, white and blue suits
BTS attends the 2022 Grammy Awards in Las Vegas.
(Jeff Kravitz / FilmMagic)

Global pop sensation BTS is headed to the White House next week to promote “Asian inclusion and representation,” according to the Associated Press.

The White House has invited the South Korean boy band to meet with President Biden to discuss the rise in anti-Asian violence and discrimination in the United States, the administration announced in a statement obtained by AP. During 2020, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, anti-Asian hate crimes increased by 76% in Los Angeles County alone.

After eight people, including six women of Asian descent, were gunned down at Atlanta-area spas last spring, BTS released a statement sending its “deepest condolences to those who have lost their loved ones” and sharing some of the musicians’ own experiences with anti-Asian racism.

The Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations on Wednesday released a special report on anti-Asian hate crime in LA County in 2020. The report revealed that anti-Asian hate crimes rose 76% from 25 to 44 in 2020, the largest number of anti-Asian hate crimes reported since 2001.

“We cannot put into words the pain of becoming the subject of such hatred and violence for such a reason,” the statement read.

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“Our own experiences are inconsequential compared to the events that have occurred over the past few weeks. But ... what is happening right now cannot be dissociated from our identity as Asians.”

The message, posted on Twitter with the hashtags #StopAsianHate and #StopAAPIHate, was the most widely shared tweet of 2021.

Whether it’s making their own high-end, unofficial merch or just dressing like them, BTS fans at SoFi show their love for the group with style.

According to CNN, the group’s pending White House visit comes shortly after Biden embarked on a three-day trip to the South Korean capital of Seoul and met with newly elected South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol.

It also comes about a week after a gunman opened fire on a Taiwanese church in Laguna Woods, Calif., killing one man and wounding five others. In May of last year, Biden signed into law a bill aimed at combating anti-Asian hate crimes.

As one of the most popular musical acts on the planet, BTS holds an immense amount of influence, especially when flanked by its fiercely loyal ARMY of fans. In November, the chart-topping artists received their second consecutive Grammy nomination for pop duo/group performance for their hit single “Butter.”

The septet — comprising RM, V, Suga, Jin, Jungkook, Jimin and J-Hope — will release its next studio album on June 10.


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