The Korean pop sensations, BTS had a different sort of world stage on Monday, 20th September as they addressed the United Nations. It was not the screaming audience the BTS were accustomed to, but they did have a very limited audience. The seven-member boy band was clad in subdued dark suits. They said that their aim was to rally young people. They were to look at how to work towards the Sustainable Development Goals. These being the UN benchmarks on which the world has fallen increasingly behind. The Sustainable Development Goals include eradicating extreme poverty around the world by 2030.
As the Covids restrictions were in force, BTS spoke before a largely empty General Assembly hall. The delegates in the front rows were listening in silence while they were occasionally snapping a picture by phone. After their remarks, the pop stars started playing a pre-recorded video of their track “Permission to Dance”. With this, they showed their moves throughout the General Assembly and on the world body’s lawn. This was facing the East River.
The BTS members told the United Nation that they were heartbroken to cancel their latest tour because of this pandemic. They had also asked other young people to share their perspectives of being the “Covid lost generation”. It was because their life was disrupted since early 2020. “There were times during the past two years when I too felt bewildered and troubled but still we hear people cry out, ‘let’s live on, let’s make the best of this moment’.” This was what singer Jin said as he recounted the responses from young people. He added, “We can’t stand still in taking on new challenges when we are in the ideal time of our lives.”
The pop stars said that they had been vaccinated against Covid and also noted that young people were searching for answers. The topic of the search was how to fight climate change. These pop stars, namely the BTS was introduced by South Korean President Moon Jae-in. He has given the pop stars diplomatic passports. This was the latest effort by Seoul to seize on the global popularity of K-pop. The United Nations have said that the Covid crisis has set the effort of eradicating poverty by 2030 back for years. More than 100 million people were thrown back into poverty and hunger. Along with them was added 4.5 million people who have died. The Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told the session that it would be very easy to lose hope. But they were not helpless or hopeless. He said, “We have a party to recovery if we choose to take it.”