2PM Entering a New Time: JaeBeom’s Leave

It seems like forever since 2PM first debuted with their debut song 10 out of 10. Now, this group’s makeup will change as their Seattle born leader leaves Korea to come back to the States.

After criticism of Korea from JaeBeom’s trainee days surfaced on the NET, Koreans were undoubtedly offended and some antifans inflated the situation, even created suicide petitions for the talented leader. Though there have also been petitions to forgive this star’s old comments, JaeBeom announced his leave as the leader of 2PM on the official 2PM fancafe on September 7th, which JYPE later confirmed. Earlier on today, JaeBeom, or now Jay Park, left Korea on a flight back to his hometown Seattle.

First off, in Jaebum’s defense, there is definitely a culture gap here. Reading his mySpace posts, I hear a voice of an American kid who is just lost, frustrated and homesick. Anyone would be if they were put in his situation. Though of the same ethnicity, there are high language barriers that need to be passed along with cultural barriers. I admire all those who live abroad in countries of different backgrounds. Why? They have the strength and endurance to overcome all the hardships another culture presents. Asian Americans have no one to turn to but each other: the mother culture thinks we’re all too Americanized and Americans see us as another culture. It’s hard enough to live as an Asian American in the US, reconciling a mother ethnicity with the one you are born into. It’s even harder bringing that unique hybrid culture back to the mother country and trying to adapt there. Trust me, I know that all too well.

At the same time, American vocabulary of “hate”, “gay” and words like those hold less harsh of a connotation than what other cultures perceive them to be in English. While it is not in our best interest to use these words in such a manner, it’s something we’re brought up with, and that has been blown out of proportion. However, this does not mean that he isn’t to take responsibility for what he has said and the language he has used, but as we know, Jay has displayed maturity in apologizing profusely and owning up to his comments.

Reading Jay’s mySpace comments give me a bit of frustration at Korean antis for making such a small thing so large. Yes, national pride warrants defense against comments like these, but a suicide petition? That’s just going overboard. Yes, Asian pride has always been strong and bold, but asking for someone to take his own life after changing and realizing his mistakes, that’s just inhumane.

But at the same time, reading his mySpace posts have given me a new sense of admiration and respect for him. In his posts, he thanks his friends for giving him compliments and is humble even in the face of acknowledgement. Jay strives to be at the top of his game and more, not just accepting praises that he’s a great rapper by Korean standards, but looking to others in an international sense and striving to be better. That is the very nature and soul of a musician that everyone should admire, and something that a lot of musicians now adays lack and replace with fluid arrogance gained from crazed fans.

I know I can’t make a great splash on my one blog here in the States, but if I could speak to Jay right here and now, here’s what I would say to him:

Thanks for enduring until now. Thanks for owning up to your comments from the past and being a mature figure that people can see. While your stay in Korea may have been rough in the beginning, I hope that you have found something new, memorable and perhaps loveable about the culture your parents are from. Being a star isn’t everything: you’re amazingly talented and can do so much with what God has given you. I pray that in everything you will be strong, remembering your roots and looking ahead to what He has given you.


~ by opusnothirteen on September 8, 2009.

2 Responses to “2PM Entering a New Time: JaeBeom’s Leave”

  1. Very, very nicely put. I feel so frustrated that none of this really had to happen, this was just blown out of proportion.
    And that suicide petition? Korean antis really need to calm down. What a horrible thing to happen.

  2. […] In addition to the hectic schedule was the MySpace fiasco on which I have my own personal opinion.  After Jay’s departure, the Hottests were divided and these boys suffered, but they managed […]

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