KPop: HOLLAND’s Debut: A Discussion of Privilege

It’s 2018 and we fucking finally have a gay idol. Praise Korean Jesus! Now, for those of you who know about gay culture in Korea, it won’t be that much of a shock that it’s taken this long for something like this to happen. In fact, it might even be surprising that it’s finally happened. Hell, back in America, it’s still rare for someone to come out at the height of their career and not face backlash from it. I can’t speak so much for other countries, including those in Europe, South America, Africa, and Australia, so I’m not going to pretend I know a lot about those cultures (except I’m pretty sure the penguins in Antartica are more progressive than we are as humans.) If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out!

One thing that has been on my mind a lot is the backlash he is facing- and it’s not just because of his polarizing vocal style, the chill beat of his debut song, or the stylistic choices made in his music video. For those who dislike the song, I’ll say it again for the people in the back: you are entitled to like/dislike what you want. This isn’t attacking anyone for their personal opinions on the song itself. Let’s get that straight. BUT!

It becomes an issue, however, when people feel personally victimized by the fact that the LGBTQ+ community and allies are, for the most part, rallying around HOLLAND to support his debut whether or not they feel that the music is to their tastes. I’ve seen the argument “It’s not fair. There are many talented artists that don’t have the backing of a community, so they never become popular.” And this is where the concept of privilege comes in. So buckle your seatbelts, hang on to your carseat, check your bigotry at the door, and get ready for a wild ride.

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