Last Thursday night (or Friday morning in Korea), the Internet was plastered with the breaking news of South Korean former president Park Geun Hye’s removal. It was a drawn out process, from the ferry incident to #ChoiSoonSilGate, and if you have no idea what I’m talking about, fear not! AskAKorean is here to help you.
Even if you had zero interest in Korean politics, you might have heard of the incident from Korean celebrities whom you follow who weren’t afraid to let their opinions be known on social media. Keep in mind that the Korean entertainment-scape has a rather long history of censorship, and that Park’s administration allegedly had a blacklist of thousands of notable artists including actors and film directors. In that kind of political climate, it’s extremely difficult to speak out against the government as a cultural influencer for fear of penalty, so it’s worth noting that entertainers in South Korea have generally been wary of actively criticizing the government.
Not this time, though, as many are crawling out of the woodwork to let themselves be heard. With the candlelight protests and a movement towards what people now esteem as true and civil democracy, you could see more and more popular celebrities speaking up on social media and even during awards ceremonies.
So who, exactly, stood up to the task?
Here are 12 Korean celebrity reactions (both direct and indirect) to Park’s ouster as President of South Korea:
1. Yoon Jong Shin — A tribute to Acting Constitutional Court Chief Judge Lee Jung-Mi
This iconic picture of Lee Jung-Mi, the Acting Constitutional Court Chief Judge who declared impeachment of Park (and also the only female in the court), shows Lee entering the court with two hair rollers still in her hair on the day of judgment. It was a symbolic image of a professional woman who prioritized fulfilling her duty as the chief judge over perfecting her looks, which drastically contrasted with Park’s always-perfect hair (during the 2014 Sewol ferry crash, Park allegedly spent 90 minutes getting her hair done before addressing the public). Yoon Jong Shin expresses his appreciation and gratitude for Lee and the rest of the court judges in this post.
2. Lee Joon of MBLAQ — “Happy Friday”
3. Yoo Ah-In — “March 10, 2017 Republic of South Korea”
The screen on Yoo Ah-In’s car dashboard shows the moment Chief Judge Lee Jung-Mi declared the court’s approval of impeachment.
4. Younha — “Great work and thank you”
To the constitutional court.
5. Kim Yuna of Jaurim — “HAHAHAHAHA”
— 김윤아 (@love_yuna) March 10, 2017
Kim Yuna cleverly referred to her own song “The Hahaha Song” to express her contentment.
6. Chansung of 2PM — “Bravo”
— 황찬성 (@2PMagreement211) March 10, 2017
As a response to an article regarding Park’s impeachment and the possibilities of further investigation.
7. Lee Jun Ho of 2PM — “Wow!”
— REAL JUNHO LEE (@dlwnsghek) March 10, 2017
8. Ok Taec Yeon of 2PM — “Impeached!”
— taec yeon ok (@taeccool) March 10, 2017
9. Kong Hyo Jin — “Even from afar…”
Notice the screen on her phone and notice her location.
10. Lee Si Young — “#ForABetterTomorrow”
11. BewhY — “HURRAY Republic of Korea”
12. Hyukoh — citing CNN…
What are your thoughts on the impeachment?
By Hyeyoung Jung · Contributor