Op-Ed: Keeping It Real (2PM)
I’ve written two opinion editorials already on the Jaebeom controversy and my dear friend daysgoby wrote an excellent article on Korea’s flawed media system but tonight I’m going to give you my interpretation of this whole mess and what I think is the right thing to do. Whether you’re a Hottest, a Korean American, Korean netizen, supporter, or someone who has been somewhat affected by this controversial debacle, come along for the ride.
This op-ed is strictly my opinion and does not reflect on Seoulbeats as a whole. I realize I am just an observer in this whole mess but as a person with a brain I’ve got some things to say.
For those of you who’ve been living under a rock for the past several days, I’ll give it to you quick and simple: 2PM’s leader, Park Jaebeom has resigned from the group and is back home in Seattle, Washington. Fans have been going ballistic the past few days with petitions, post-its, rumors of boycotts and I’ve got so much to say and all this space to type, so bare with me. This will be my last opinion editorial on this matter for the sake of Jaebeom and his fellow 2PM members.
Unless you’re part of JYPE, a member of 2PM, or posing in family portraits with Jay Park, you don’t know what is really going on. Like me, all you know is what you hear from the media, which means you or I or those crazy Hottest fans stewing up a boycotting mutiny, have absolutely no idea what the real deal is. Because we don’t know what caused the resignation or what led the leader to get on a plane back home, why don’t we all just take a chill pill and relax for the time being. Let me take all this craziness one step at a time and break it down for you. The level this situation has gone to could have been completely and utterly avoided if fans just sat back and accepted what was going down; but we’re all KPOP fans, which means that would’ve been impossible. So now that the psychos have been unleashed, let’s take a look at where some folks are going wrong.
At first, when Jay was still in Korea dealing with massive amounts of criticism and death threats, I wrote up a post saying that as a human being, I supported a petition to fight against the other petition which called for Jaebeom to commit suicide. But soon after, Jay wrote a letter to his fans stating that he was quitting. He was then filmed leaving on a jet plane for Seattle. As soon as this disaster struck the ears of Hottest everywhere, petitions spread across the Internet faster than the bubonic plague.
Hottest, I think you guys are great but I have to keep it real: This petition is useless and they know you’re trying to help, but you’re just making matters worse. Whether it was Jay’s decision to leave or it was JYPE’s decision to let him go, the cold hard truth is that he’s gone. Convincing people to sign a petition to bring him back will not bring him back. Even if this petition is indeed signed by 10,000 people and the goal is met, does not mean that Tinkerbell will turn this petition into magic fairy dust and sprinkle it on Jay’s head to give him the power he needs to fly back to Korea and land in the arms of his fellow 2PM members. So for Gandhi’s sake, stop with the damn petitions.
I really think the different color post-its make the JYP buildings really pretty and colorful but writing out Jay’s name with hot pink pieces of paper will not bring Jaebeom back or make the situation easier for JYP. I know you guys love him and want him back, but your hard work was for nothing because as soon as word got out that JYP’s building had been attacked by weaponless,lifeless pieces of squared paper, he commanded them to be taken off. But you guys seem to keep doing it and your efforts have fallen on the sidelines, literally. I have to keep it real: Post-its will not bring Park Jaebeom back. He has a phone and he has Internet and I’m 99.9% sure he knows that most people support him, but at the same time I’m sure he wants this to go away, so please, stop with the post-its. You’re wasting trees.
This by far was the most ridiculous thing I’ve heard so far. An underground 2PM fansite (I didn’t even know underground fansites existed) has decided to boycott JYP Entertainment, 2009 Dream Concert tickets, 2PM albums, 2PM merchandise, and all of future 2PM activities. In other words, fans will not support JYP or the rest of 2PM unless Jaebeom is put back in the group. And just like that, you “fans” just became “antis” and are everything but supportive. And if you think I was angry before, get ready, cause Ellie is about to go Jekyll and Hyde on all your asses.
Here are my opinions:
Wooyoung, Nickhun, Taec, Junsu, Chansung, and Junho are still 2PM whether you like it or not. Do you think they like the fact that their leader and hyung just went home packing because of some malicious, psychotic netizens? Do you think boycotting JYP and 2PM will have Jaebeom merrily skipping his way back to the group with a ginormous lollipop in hand and pigtails in his hair? I mean the whole notion of it is so ludicrous that it’s actually laughable. Banning against 6 vulnerable, hard working, singers will not make the band into 7 again.
Here’s a reality check: Every one of you who have decided to join this insane underground fansite to boycott the entertainment company and the group are just escalating this problem into new heights that were never meant to be reached. I don’t know Jay and I have no connection to the rest of 2PM but as a human being, why can’t you all just understand that what the boys need right now is space, time, and silent support? Stop suffocating them with your post-its, boycotts, and petitions. I’m just a KPOP entertainment writer and I feel as if this whole thing is taking a toll on me and I’m nowhere near the battlefield! Can you just imagine what they’re all going through?
All in all, what I am saying to you all is to let it go. What’s done is done and we should all let the situation breathe. Give JYPE time to figure out what to do next, give 2PM love, and give Jaebeom back his life. He’s got family and friends to lean on, so let his healing process begin. You love him because he’s talented and music is his life. If you’re that passionate about something, you’re not going to let netizens bring you down. So as fans, let him heal so he can come back to live out the rest of his dream.
After a night’s sleep, I woke up and read some of your comments and trust me, I know many of you are suspicious about JYPE and JYP’s motives. The point of my op-ed isn’t to point a finger at one culprit, it’s to tell all the fans that whatever happened with Jaebeom and JYP entertainment has happened. Jaebeom either quit 2PM on his own or JYPE told him to leave. We’ll never know unless someone close to the situation comes out and blatantly tells us. Whatever the reason may be, the point is that Jay has quit 2PM and he’s home in Seattle. If Jay’s friend did indeed say that the only way to make a comeback are his fans, then he’s damn right because fans are all he has right now, but I’m sure he didn’t want the support to be be taken to the level where fans are boycotting the rest of his members’ activities. To sum this edit up, we don’t know the real deal but since the present situation is that Jay has left and there are 6 other members trying to clean up the mess, I say support by giving the leader space and bringing the rest of the group love. I doubt this is the last we’ll see of Jay, he’ll be back.
Article by www.seoulbeats.com