K-pop group BTS and record label Big Hit Entertainment donate $1.4 million to Black Lives Matter

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Global K-pop sensation BTS has donated $1m to Black Lives Matter in support of protests sparked by the death of George Floyd.
BTS issued a rare political statement on Twitter in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. PHOTO: BTS OFFICIAL/ INSTAGRAM

SINGAPORE -K-pop megastars BTS and their record label, Big Hit Entertainment, have pledged US$1 million (S$1.4 million) to Black Lives Matter, after declaring "we stand against racial discrimination" on Twitter last week.

The donation was confirmed on Saturday (June 6) by Variety, who said the money was transferred to the organisation last week.

Speaking to Variety, managing director for Black Lives Matter Kailee Scales said: "Black people all over the world are in pain at this moment from the trauma of centuries of oppression. We are moved by the generosity of BTS and allies all over the world who stand in solidarity in the fight for Black lives."

On June 4, the boy band issued a rare political statement on Twitter in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

Writing in both Korean and English,it said: "We stand against racial discrimination. We condemn violence. You, I and we all have the right to be respected. We will stand together. #BlackLivesMatter."

Earlier in the week, legions of K-pop fans hijacked the #WhiteLivesMatter hashtag with anti-racist posts of K-pop memes and videos to drown out racist messages.

The donation also comes in the same week as the music industry stepping up to donate to social justice causes and campaigns against racism, with Warner Music as well as Sony Music pledging US$100 million each.

Musicians like Canadian R&B singer The Weeknd also announced US$500,000 in donations to Black Lives Matter and other groups, while American rapper Kanye West made a US$2 million donation to support the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, according to CNN.

Floyd died after a white police officer knelt on his neck in Minneapolis last month, Taylor was fatally shot by a Louisville Metro Police Department officer in March while Arbery was shot to death while jogging in Georgia in February.

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The donation will be going towards legal fees for Taylor's and Arbery's families, as well as black-owned businesses in trouble his hometown of Chicago and other US cities.

The rapper also joined protesters in Chicago on Thursday (June 4).


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