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K-Pop stars BTS went to the White House to talk about anti-Asian hate crimes

Korean band BTS appears at the daily press briefing with Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, to discuss Asian inclusion and representation, and addressing anti-Asian hate crimes and discrimination.
Saul Loeb
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AFP/Getty Images
Korean band BTS appears at the daily press briefing with Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre, to discuss Asian inclusion and representation, and addressing anti-Asian hate crimes and discrimination.

Updated May 31, 2022 at 8:25 PM ET

Global K-Pop stars BTS were at The White House on Tuesday to speak with President Biden about anti-Asian hate crimes and discrimination.

With their dance videos and catchy songs, BTS is one of the most popular pop bands in the world. At a White House press briefing, they talked about the importance of inclusion and representation.

Through an interpreter, BTS' Jimin told reporters, "We were devastated by the recent surge of hate crimes including Asian American hate crimes. To put a stop on this and support the cause, we'd like to take this opportunity to voice ourselves once again." Suga added, "It's not wrong to be different. Equality begins when we open up and embrace all of our differences."

Last year President Biden signed into law the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act to give law enforcement resources to investigate crimes against Asian Americans and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders.

Copyright 2022 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Corrected: May 31, 2022 at 12:00 AM EDT
A previous version of the story misquoted Suga. His statement should say, "Equality begins when we open up and embrace all of our differences."
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Elizabeth Blair
Elizabeth Blair is a Peabody Award-winning senior producer/reporter on the Arts Desk of NPR News.