I’m not a huge Kim Hyun Joong fan but I am an appreciator of all things handsome, and he is handsome, there is no denying that. I just saw him as the visual from that other boy band and Kim Jaejoong‘s equally handsome friend. Then, I watched the first episodes of “Barefoot Friends” and started to appreciate him more. I even dedicated a paragraph to my feelings for him in my review of the show:
Look at that face! Look at those features! He was also incredibly funny on that show because of his aloof 4D personality. Can you blame me for being smitten? I started to follow him after that. His solo work is nothing spectacular musically, but his music videos are usually entertaining (and sometimes visually impressive). He has done a few dramas, and, while this is not my area of expertise, I don’t think they did terribly.
Yes, I liked him. I was a fan of his work. I didn’t even have gentle Noona feels for him; I had burning if-I-could-have-your-offspring-I-totally-would woman feels for him.
This upsets me.
This isn’t drunk driving. This isn’t even getting caught with marijuana and pretending you didn’t know what it was. This isn’t cheating on your beautiful actress wife. This isn’t gambling, cheating on taxes, chart manipulating, foolish SNS ranting, or being a narcissistic prick. This is repeatedly (repeatedly!) using your body to inflict serious physical pain and injury on someone you say you love.
I have a few choice adjectives on what kind of act that is, but I will just say that it is an act that deserves serious consequences.
I don’t know if that’s enough, and my fear is that in months, or maybe years, he will make a comeback and become a public figure again.
My worry is that he will be our Chris Brown.
Chris Brown is living proof that the general public will forgive and support a man who beat his girlfriend if he is talented, rich, and connected enough.
As human beings, why do we excuse terrible behavior if there’s money to be made? Why do we spoil celebrities with undeserved affection and attention?
If you can stomach it, you can scroll through the hundreds of comments in the articles about Kim Hyun Joong. Most of them will be of disappointment, but there are also way too many comments of stubborn support and defensive accusations. I thought of sharing some screen caps of the truly ridiculous comments, but I don’t want to stupid-shame my Soompiers. I like to think that the Soompi community is a little less foolish than other K-Pop communities, but the ignorance is here too.
I don’t know if it is possible to reason with such passion but I will say this: We don’t damage what we value. This is why our most prized possessions are carefully protected and secured. It is the same with our relationships. If you value someone, know their worth, then you don’t hurt that person. You can love someone and not value them in the same way you wear out your favorite Converses because, even though you love those shoes, you know they are not worth very much. When assault or abuse happens, it is because the abuser is putting his (or her) feelings and desires above the well-being of the one receiving the abuse.
So, if you are in an abusive relationship, or if you even ever thought that you would put up with the beatings if you were Kim Hyun Joong’s girlfriend, I am telling you that you are not worth less than any other person. You deserve, like everyone else, to feel safe and be healthy. You are valuable.
I feel sorry for “A” but my heart hurts for Kim Hyun Joong, too. Even now I don’t think he is a terrible person, just that he did terrible things. I’m not going to pretend I know anything about what really happened between the two of them, but from my experience, people hurt others because they have hurt themselves. I also extend my sympathies to his fans, his company, his and her families because this is a situation where everyone loses, some more than others.
*The opinions expressed in this editorial are solely those of the author.