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Park Yourself Somewhere Else, You’re Not Welcome Here

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Park Jaebeom of Korean boyband 2PM, has gone from famous to infamous in two minutes flat. What happened?

An article by Penny K

2PM, the Korean boyband under the same production company that manages the Nobodies – I mean, Wondergirls – JYP Entertainment has been thrown into the spotlight recently for all the wrong reasons.

Like a fairytale told backwards, 2PM debuted on a high note.

They made their first public appearance as the final product of months of training (read: manufacturing) in September 2008, the 2PM boys caught the eyes of Korean fangirls for their acrobatic and b-boy dance styles and I’m quite sure, their cuteness.


They achieved the triple crown for their song “I Hate You” on Korean music countdown show M!Countdown by July this year. On 30 July this year, they won the “Only One Song” award on M!Countdown.

An average search on YouTube of any of their songs will result in comments not only from Korean fans but also from worldwide followers of the band – Korean-American, Japanese and even Southeast Asian fans.

On 4 September 2009, some articles surfaced on the Internet regarding Park’s posts on his personal Myspace account about his dislike for Korea back in 2005 when he was still a trainee for JYP Entertainment. Some of these less than favourable comments read:

jpthumb“wassup foo…haven talked to ur gay face in a while…watchu do now a days……korea is gay…i hate koreans…i wanna come back…”

“waddup son…….yea man korea is whack…but everyone thinks I’m like the illest rapper wen i suck nuts at rappin…so dass pretty dope…haha…peace”

Rule number one: never insult Korea because the Koreans will be unhappy. And as fate, or national pride would have it, they were. Park sent an official apology but almost immediately, anti-2PM fans and netizens were petitioning for him to quit the band and leave Korea. Another more fanatic and rabid bunch were petitioning for him to leave this world; “Jaebeom Should Commit Suicide”. 

Agreeably, Park’s comments were unsavoury, it doesn’t take a Korean to feel that way about what he said. Doesn’t matter to what extent he meant it, the fact remains that the statements made have negative connotations.

But what of the reactions of the anti-Park? Korean society is competitive as it is, so where it comes to the pursuit of idols and stars, the same kind of competitiveness is applied. The “my idol is better than yours” mentality is made worse by the sheer number of boybands and girl groups in the Korean music industry. The role of the media and the Internet need not even be explained.

In that mad rush for a piece of the pie, knives in the form of cutting words and negativity are hurled

suicide-272x300around. Inevitably, people get hurt. So far this year, three Korean public figures have committed suicide – two female actresses and ex-President Roh Moo-hyun.

If Park cannot be absolved of his mistake, then his greatest atonement would be to quit the band, which he has already done. Blood doesn’t have to be spilled over this.

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