BTS Fans Slam ABC Over Controversial Segment About the Group’s United Nations Speech
BTS fans (a.k.a. ARMYs) came out swinging on social media Tuesday (September 25), accusing ABC of broadcasting offensive statements about the beloved South Korean music group.
The history-making act, who appeared at the United Nations in New York City on Monday (September 24) to advocate for global youth issues with a powerful speech, were the subject of a World News Now broadcast aired yesterday evening on television. During the segment, anchor Kendis Gibson vocalized rather inflammatory thoughts and stereotypes about the group, referring to them repeatedly as a "boy band from Korea."
Watch a clip of the segment, below:
It's important to note that many fans of BTS do not like to refer to the group as a "boy band," as some feel that the phrase bears certain juvenile connotations that may undermine the act's advocacy, hard work and meaningful lyrics not often culturally associated with typical "boy bands."
Gibson was also accused of being racially insensitive for repeatedly and incredulously highlighting that BTS are from South Korea—"a boy band from Korea," he exclaimed more than once, shaking his head as his co-anchor called the septet "role models"—and for seemingly making fun of the group's use of English as a second language.
In one moment during the segment, Gibson snickered at the metaphorical proclamation of "speak yourself" from group leader RM's speech, which the journalist and his co-anchor appeared to find semantically confusing. He sarcastically called it "poetic," joking that it brought tears to his eyes.
Gibson also bizarrely stated that the group is known for "spreading their legs" in their music videos and ridiculed them for their "choreographed dance moves."
Naturally, fans were disappointed by the broadcast, with many calling upon ABC and Gibson for a retraction or apology—and others simply wishing to educate the network.