The phenomenon that is BTS continues unabated. The seven-member K-pop boy band landed in New York this week, getting ready for their big history-making stadium concert. They’ll be performing at a sold-out show in front of 40,000 people at Citi Field in New York City next week, the largest U.S. concert ever by a Korean artist, according to Billboard. But before the concert, BTS made the usual rounds: Good Morning America, The Tonight Show, even Soho for a little shopping.
Oh, and they squeezed in another bit of history-making: the first K-pop group ever to address the United Nations General Assembly.
They spoke as a part of UNICEF’s Generation Unlimited campaign dedicated “to ensure every young person is in education, training or employment by 2030.” And the speech that Kim Nam-joon, better known as RM, so eloquently and movingly gave at the U.N. spoke to BTS’s message of #speakyourself: “I want to hear your voice,” he said. “No matter who you are, where you’re from, your skin color, gender identity: Speak yourself.”
When asked by Jimmy Fallon, RM explained what #speakyourself was all about: “Speaking yourself instead of letting other people speak for you. Because to truly know ourselves, it’s important to firstly know who I am and where I’m from, what my name is and what my voice is.”
Watch his entire speech here (and wait for the adorable photo op at the end):
RM’s impassioned and personal speech, in which he referenced his insecurities and fears, inspired a slew of #speakyourself tweets, where everyone from teens to moms, from everywhere from Pakistan to Italy, shared, revealed, owned, and inspired. Here, just some of the ARMY and their response to the call of #speakyourself.
My name is Emmett, I’m almost 20 years old, and not only am I a proud fanboy of BTS but I’m also a proud U.S. Navy Sailor.
Throughout all of the intense military training I’ve had to go through, BTS has helped me through it all
and will continue to do so. 💜#SpeakYourself
— emmett misses bts (@cerisechim) September 25, 2018
— Cynthia (@cyntaea) September 25, 2018
#SpeakYourself Hi I am nagham I am a 13 years old and I am an egyptian army . Three months ago I was insecure about my looks and my weight . Then my cousin told me about the bts at the begining I didn’t understand the LY series but after knowing what it means @BTS_twt
— KIM NAMJOONIE LEFT ME IN LOVE WITH MYSELF (@Naghamosama16) September 29, 2018
— Dua 🌼 (@Dualovesbts) September 25, 2018
My name is Susan. Somewhere along the way I lost myself. I forgot how to love myself. A few months ago I was planning my suicide. Today I am rediscovering who I am and learning that my voice matters. Thank you @BTS_twt! 💜💜💜 #SpeakYourself #WhatIsYourName #GenU #Youth2030
— 💜ARMYmom💜 (@BangtanARMYmom) September 26, 2018
— jen is not okay ☾ 700 days with jungoo (@uncoverjeons) September 25, 2018
— Bea🌻 (@aastrale) September 25, 2018
I’m Maham from Pakistan.I’m a girl who hates stereotypes and wants to take her own life decisions.I want to be a lawyer(let’s hope I become one).I’m currently applying for law schools.I also want to help people and make our society a better place.#WhoIAm #SPEAKYOURSELF @BTS_twt
— Maham Ayaz🌸 (@MahamAyaz5) September 29, 2018
There’s so much I left out, the bitter details that made it all so much worse. But they helped make me stronger as well, and I’m grateful for them too. pic.twitter.com/fJpMNSKEs2
— stellar (@stellarlights2) September 29, 2018
— ⋆ elyne ⋆ // 4 DAYS (@rosoideae__) September 25, 2018
— anita (@rita6silva) September 26, 2018
Are you a member of the ARMY? Were you inspired by the BTS UN speech and their message of #speakyourself? Share your story below!