“No matter who you are or where you’re from, find your voice by speaking yourself.”
If you’re a member of the BTS Army, you know there’s no shortage of pride that can be had for the guys. The performers have taken the world by storm with their music and their artistry, resulting in sold-out concerts worldwide, major awards, and collaborations with so many other top celebrities. But today, the K-Pop group was invited to appear at the United Nations to speak out on behalf of youth issues.
That’s right: The guys helped launch a new initiative called the Generation Unlimited program at one of the biggest organizations in the world. And they traveled to New York to speak on behalf of the youngest citizens doing important things internationally – and their fans.
Kim Namjoon – also known as RM – delivered a heartfelt and powerful speech on behalf of the group, speaking beautifully about his own experiences, the band’s, and BTS’ empowering “Love Yourself” anti-violence campaign created with Unicef.
While speaking about his own childhood in South Korea, RM shared how he used to only dream about changing the world in wildly big ways – but now he’s out there doing it. But it wasn’t always easy, and as he shared, there were many times he felt like giving up and giving in to others’ pressures.
“I would look up at the night sky and wonder. I would use to dream the dreams of a boy. I used to imagine I was a superhero who could save the world,” he said in his speech. “In the intro to one of our old songs, there’s a line that says my heart stopped when I was maybe 9 or 10. Looking back, that is when I began to worry about what other people thought of me. I stopped looking up at the night sky… the stars. I stopped daydreaming.”
“I tried to jam myself into others’ molds, Soon, I began to shut out my own voice and listen to those of others. No one called out my name and neither did I,” he added. “My heart stopped and my eyes closed shut. Like this, I — we — lost our names. I’d like to ask all of you what is your name. What excites you and makes your heart beat. Tell me your story. I want to hear your story and conviction. No matter who you are or where you’re from. Your skin color or gender identity. Find your voice by speaking yourself.”
You can watch Namjoon’s entire speech in the player below – and get prepared to be inspired!
We loved the messages of support coming from the BTS Army after the speech, especially since this is such a poignant moment for the guys.
First of all – we could never be this calm and well-spoken at a huge public speaking occasion, and Namjoon is out here doing it all gracefully in a foreign language.
He also wrote it all himself.
And he didn’t really read much of it straight off his notes, which kept it from sounding boring or rehearsed. Instead, it sounded like freestyle poetry – or one of his raps.
Plus, he gave the fandom such a respectful and special call-out. Swoon:
Even if you’re (somehow) NOT already a BTS fan, this speech is still so important.
Which is awesome, because the guys aren’t just saying these words at their own concert full of dedicated fans, but in front of world leaders and change-makers they can work together with to make change.
Today is a day to be especially proud of BTS!