K-Pop Idol Called a ‘Monster’ By Japanese Fans For Wearing Brand That Supports Comfort Women

K-Pop Idol Called a ‘Monster’ By Japanese Fans For Wearing Brand That Supports Comfort Women
Jin Hyun
October 25, 2019
Member of K-pop duo TVXQ, Yunho, is being criticized by Japanese social media users after being photographed sporting a cap from a Korean brand that openly supports Korean wartime sex slaves from the Japanese colonial period.
Yunho was spotted wearing a Marymond hat at the airport heading back to Seoul, Korea following his overseas schedule in Japan.
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Japanese fans began voicing their complaints after noticing the brand of the cap, with some users calling the artist an “idiot” and a “monster,” as well as accusing him of being “anti-Japanese” for supporting Korean wartime sex slaves who were forced into brothels by the Imperial Japanese Army.
“It seems like he really didn’t have any intention to hide it. Yunho didn’t even think about being considerate to Japan,” one user allegedly wrote, as translated by Koreaboo.
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Some users claimed the idol was being inconsiderate towards Japanese fans for disregarding their views and opinions on this history, despite there being definitive proof on the existence of hundreds of thousands of comfort women.
As the controversy spread on social media, several users also criticized the Japanese fans for attempting to silence the artist and expressed their confusion for such a strong negative reaction towards a pro-human rights brand.
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This was not the first time Yunho has been spotted wearing a Marymond hat. In 2018, the idol reportedly posted a photo of himself wearing the same cap on his Instagram.
Marymond is a Korean brand that produces apparel, stationary, water bottles, and phone cases inspired by victims of wartime sexual slavery and advocates for various human rights issues, especially issues concerning women’s rights and sexual violence.
When the company took off, then-CEO Yoon Hong-jo clarified to the Korean JoongAng Daily that Marymond does not treat this as a political issue between Korea and Japan but instead as a human rights violation against women. Since then, the phrase “I Marymond you” has become a way to show support for these victims.
Marymond started eight years ago in an effort to restore dignity to former sex slaves during the Japanese colonial era and has since gained support from several Korean A-list celebrities such as members from BTS.
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Proceeds from the sales have gone towards the creation of the comfort women museum and to caring for the remaining victims, whose numbers are quickly dwindling.
Featured image left via Instagram/@yunho2154, right via Instagram/@themarymond
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