By Genesis Miranda
Korean International students from Fullerton College helped organize a flash mob in the center of Korea Town, Los Angeles to help promote the message of peace and unity for the Korean Peninsula.
The event had the participation of various Korean International students, Korean American students and South Korean pop singer JangHoon Kim.
One of the main organizers and director of the flash mob was FC student and theatre major, JeongYoon Rho.
“…My main goal is making a show, and I wanted to be the director of the show. So it is something I have dreamed of and I am able to promote how the Korean culture is beautiful and how the Korean Asian culture is beautiful to others especially to American people,” said Rho.
It took about three weeks to plan the flash mob. The production was founded in the Non-governmental Organization, International Student Right Center.
Rho organized and directed the dance during the flash mob along with other Korean International students, who were then contacted by Kim.
Students joined the flash mob dance to send the message that they want peace for Korea and also to claim that the island of Dokdo is Korean territory.
“For us this is the main objective, to advertise that Dokdo Island is Korean territory, because Japan keeps saying that it is their territory but it is not true, they are lying. Koreans are really sensitive about that,” said JaeYoung Sung, 22, student at UCLA.
“Actually, Jang Hoon Kim is an avid supporter in promoting the ‘Dokdo is Korea’s Land’ movement. Also, not only has he put efforts to resolve many disputes such as the Dokdo issue and sexual slavery in Japan, but he also supports to promote how Korean culture is beautiful…” said Rho.
Students wanted to raise awareness of the issues occurring recently and ask for peace for Korea and the world.
“When I heard about the flash mob, I was participating because JeongYoon was making it, so for friendship I was participating. But when I got there with other Korean International students and Korean American students, and doing the flash mob I felt like we were really wanting peace and we unified there to call for peace for Korea,” said YunSu Park, physics major at FC.
Recently, news has been going around about the threats from North Korea against the allies of South Korea and the United States, and this has worried many Americans and Koreans living in the U.S.
North Korea has claimed that they are ready to carry out a pre-emptive war against the two allies, causing fear to the American people, which is why this is considered a global issue.
“The circumstances in the Korean peninsula are not stable, so almost everyone in Korea is worrying about the relations between the South and North. We are going to participate and dance for peace and reunion of Korea, we wish,” said Yonggi Lee, 27, Santa Monica College student.
Having the participation of Kim really made the students feel more empowered and motivated them to fight for what they believed in.
“The participation of him (Kim) gave us more strength in doing that kind of activity,” said Park.
“I was so glad to work with JangHoon Kim. I felt honored that I could achieve my dream project that promotes Korean culture and many disputes in Korea to other countries with JangHoon Kim who always pursues what I pursue,” said Rho.
“…I was happy to meet him to work for my dream project, the flash mob. By having the participation of JangHoon Kim in the flash mob, I believed that it could receive a lot of media attention and worldwide attention better than if we did the flash mob without him,” said Rho.
Kim has been a singer for many years in Korea, but he dedicates most of his time to going around the world and helping others.
“He’s been doing this all his life, going to events and just sharing the message of peace, friendship, family, and love. And that’s what he’s saying, that his first title is a singer but his second job is just going to events and really sharing the message of good,” said Mishelle Oh, 19, student at FC.
“…There’s a threat against the U.S. that there may be a nuclear war and targeted towards the U.S. We don’t like that, we are basically asking for peace. We want to send the message of peace…It is not time for war, it is not time to fight against a country but it is time to ask for peace and help the others, time to help the poor, it is time to make a relationship with others not fight against them country to country,” said Kim.
Around 60 people participated in the flash mob on Saturday, May 4 in LA promoting peace for Korea.
They danced to a remix of the traditional Korean song “Arirang.”
“Lots of people stopped and enjoyed our flash mob. Even though they didn’t know the Korean traditional music, they tried to sing along to the music. Some of them tried to dance to the music as well,” said Rho.
Rho added, “Mostly, people tend to consider ‘peace’ as a boring and difficult topic…we believe to create a peaceful world. Firstly people should understand peace is not a difficult word and topic. So we planed flash mob so that we can help people to understand about the serious controversial issue in friendly way,” Rho said, “We put a message that longed for the reunification of Korea and desired peace on the Korean peninsula. We planned the flash mob, aiming for a tension-free Korea, and will call on the North to stop its provocative acts and threats of war.”
Translation for JangHoon Kim by: Mishelle Oh.
Click on this link to see the flash mob dance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0VZOEGHlaE