In response to the latest wildfire rumor and JYJ scandal circulating the internet, I felt compelled to post my own personal response to this ridiculous and tragic circumstance.
In case you haven’t heard (which, if you are a K-pop fan, you ought to be ashamed), JYJ- my beloved Jaejoong, Yoochun and Junsu- recently had an audio released of them screaming at fans, cursing at them, and- as it is assumed- also using violence on them by hitting some of them. This reaction was aimed at ‘Sasengs’, sick and crazy girls who literally STALK them day and night by following them in a long string of legit ‘Saeseng taxis’ which make money off helping girls to follow and stalk K-pop idols at all hours of the day.
This was the first time I ever heard the word ‘Saseng’ and I was honestly disturbed. Yes, I am a massive fan of JYJ, and I stalk them in the figurative sense of following their work via internet, but to take it to the level these girls do is just tragic. These girls (which, as it is believed, are many) know their address, phone number, social security numbers, personal schedules- everything- and they try NONSTOP to contact them and intrude into their lives. When I read articles about JYJ’s scandal, it actually brought tears to my eyes.
Jaejoong, who is credited to be the worst offender, was quoted to have screamed obscenities at them, calling many of them “bitches” and “dogs” (I know, that this came from gentle Jaejoong shocks me too). Some of what he mentioned was how he felt like “a criminal in hiding”, that he “lives in fear” and how he wished he wasn’t famous so he could just have a “normal” life. I felt so sad reading this. As a fan, to push your beloved artist to actually loathe their lives and be driven to such madness is just unforgivable.
Critics claim that as people who rely on their “fans” for their success, JYJ should have handled this with more poise and maturity. My response? Until you’ve lived a day, a month, several YEARS in the kind of world they live in, can any of us really scorn their actions? Their reaction, while extreme, was the result of what several years of public and private torture have done to them.
Their reactions prove what many of these saseng fans can’t seem to grasp: IDOLS ARE HUMAN BEINGS. They may be famous, and sure, they signed up for it, but to be driven to live in fear and misery because of so-called “fans” is just sickening. A true fan would respect the privacy and personal space of an artist. What these sasengs do is selfish and wrong. Some sasengs even say they don’t mind abuse, just as long as they can be close to their loves. Ugh.
I don’t know Jaejoong, or what happened. A sketchy recording may not really be sufficient evidence. However, while I don’t blame Jaejoong for his actions, taking this measure to actually hitting young women due to their obsession is quite wrong, I agree. I can’t imagine what kind of messed up feelings he must have had to be driven to do something like this.
Nevertheless, you can call me ridiculous up all you want, but I support JYJ. The majority of responses I’ve noticed towards this issue is that most fans are still fully supportive and on JYJ’s side. This recording is years old, back from the TVXQ days, and only now resurfaced. I’m willing to bet JYJ is not at all the first group to have had serious trouble with crazy Sasengs.
If JYJ’s reputation is damaged due to this ridiculous scandal, I don’t know what I’ll think. I know I’ll still support and love them as ever. A fan is a fan. Not a stalker.
This blog entry was not merely to mention the JYJ scandal, but the entire severity of “Idol Mania” in Korea, and the level of obsession that many freaks will take it to. I feel sad for so many artists in Korea who are literally tortured by fans who can’t leave them alone. I know crazy fans are everywhere, even here in my country, but what many foreigners can’t understand is how bad it is in Korea, a society which is literally DEVOTED solely to its idols’ every move and thought. Fans need to understand that even idols are human beings, and to cause them pain based on your own selfishness is inexcusable.
There may be two sides to this arguement, and I acknowledge that, but I hold true to my beliefs. In the words of TVXQ’s old Japanese song- I will most definitly “Stand By U” JYJ. And, if I could, me and the army of outraged fans would happily go run down those evil Sasengs.
So….anyways. Hope I don’t get killed by anyone for voicing my opinion in this article.
Over and out. JYJ FIGHTING!