An Australian news program made a harmful and insensitive joke about BTS in relation to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic during its coverage of the 2022 Grammys.
An evening show titled The project delivered a series of remarks at the award show, which took place on Sunday evening (April 3), but a video of the segment has since gone viral for all the wrong reasons on Twitter.
In particular, members of BTS ARMY understandably challenged a problematic joke about the septet in relation to the pandemic.
The segment noted that various BTS members have in recent months tested positive for the virus. Jungkook was allowed to perform after being quarantined for several days before the show, according to Billboard.
The segment also showed a video of Member V dancing and laughing in the crowd with an animation of COVID-19 germs spewing from his mouth.
You can watch the segment below. The joke takes place around the 0:38 mark:
The visuals and involvement disseminated by The project undoubtedly perpetuate harmful stereotypes that can lead to violence against Asians, which has seen a dramatic increase in the years since COVID-19 entered the public consciousness as Asians continue to be unfairly taken for scapegoats by racists.
It’s also worth pointing out that V – who was turned into the butt of the joke – tested positive for the virus all the way back in February, according to Billboard. It was around the same time Justin Bieber — who also performed at the Grammys last night — was diagnosed with COVID-19, according to ABC.
However, the show chose to focus on BTS.
Fans took to social media to slam the news show for their inappropriate joke. Notably, “APOLOGIZE TO BTS” and #StopAsianHate were trending on Twitter as the video made its way onto the platform.
“Wtf is wrong with you? Promoting Asian hate? Funny that you do anything to gain weight,” one fan wrote in an impassioned tweet. “For fame, for recognition even if it means hating someone. GET A LIFE. APOLOGIZE TO BTS. APOLOGIZE TO TAEHYUNG.”
“Racism is never funny in any situation,” another fan wrote. “What you are doing is purely racist. Apologize to BTS immediately. Stop the racism.”
“Whoever did this apologizes to BTS and also to us ASIAN people. Being Asian doesn’t mean we spread covid you know that,” someone else wrote.
Check out some of BTS ARMY’s responses below:
BTS delivered their first-ever on-site performance at the ceremony on Sunday night. They were also nominated for a Grammy in the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance category.
2022 Grammy Awards Red Carpet Fashion
Below, take a look at the most talked about celebrity fashion moments from the 2022 Grammy Awards.