[news] What to Do With Misbehaving Celebs?

This past Wednesday K-Pop idol Kang In sat down in a bar, sipped on a drink and exchanged a few words with another patron before exchanging fists with him outside.

The incident is raising the old question ― why do young celebrities misbehave?

Figuring out the best way to modulate the impact of their transgressions on hundreds of thousands of young fans is a serious issue, especially in the age of the Internet.

Yet, psychologists point out that it's mainly a case of a few rotten apples. Most entertainers are well-behaved, but it's the misbehaving ones that make the headlines.

Prof. Pyo Chang-won of the National Police Academy said that, in most cases, the stars' youthful immaturity led to the altercations. Ninety-nine times out of a 100, if somebody calls them names, the celebrities will walk away, but, in that one case, they'll get into a fight. It's that one time that makes the news.

"Teenage stars and those in their 20s are not mature enough to find peaceful resolutions when distressed," Pyo told The Korea Times.

The consumption of alcohol simply fans the flames. "As with ordinary people, there is a higher chance of acting out when they have drinks," the professor said.

Perhaps the bigger issue is what impact their callowness, whatever the cause may be, will have on their fans, most of whom are at very impressionable ages.

"Given their greater influence on society, celebrities should learn how to control themselves," Pyo said, adding that the celebrities' misbehavior must have a "staggering" impact on their fans.

A recent Labor Ministry-commissioned survey of 1,000 teenagers found that 23.1 percent of respondents agreed that celebrities were their role models.

The report also said the influence will be greater with the advent of the multimedia era.

Already, the Internet has been galvanized after Kang In was booked. His supporters have been flooding his agency SM Entertainment's Web site. Some criticized Kang In, but their numbers pale in comparison to those who support him.

One message shows blind support: "We trust you."

Yet, some aren't putting up with the star's antics. "How dare a public figure pick a fight with a citizen? Leave the band. Shame on you," another message read.

There is a long history of celebrities causing trouble. Some have grown up, showing a greater degree of maturity. Others just disappear. But many simply take a hiatus and let things settle before coming back.

Singer Kim Chang-ryul, a member of DJ DOC, earned the nickname "street fighter" for his frequent participation in brawls.

The 36-year-old, who made his debut 15 years ago, recently confessed on a TV talk show that he has been involved in more than 100 fights since his debut and spent more than 75 million won in settlements. He's cleaned up his act, and hasn't made the headlines for fighting for a long time.

Actor Ju Ji-hoon, who had enjoyed a lofty reputation for his fine-tuned performances, was found guilty of consuming illegal drugs in June.

The 27-year-old was given a suspended six-month jail term, ordered to complete 120 hours of community service and pay 360,000 won in fines. The actress indicted with Ju on charges of smuggling drugs from Japan and distributing them to other entertainers was sentenced to three years in prison. Many industry observers believe that Ju is biding his time to make a comeback.

However, drunk driving has been the major cause for concern.

In April 2006, Hero, a member of the K-Pop idol group TVXQ, had his driver's license suspended for 100 days for drunk driving.

In 2005, Jun Jin, a member of popular K-Pop group Shinhwa, was caught while driving under the influence and had his license revoked. In the same year, Kim Sang-hyeok, a member of now-defunct Click-B, and Song Baek-kyeong, leader of hip-hop group 1TYM, failed field sobriety tests, resulting in their disappearances from the small screen.

Korea Times

10 Responses so far.

  1. Anonymous says:

    kill him suju disband

  2. Minako says:

    Shut up anonymous, the truth is out!

  3. Anonymous says:

    wth is with this article!
    "One message shows blind support: "We trust you.""
    the truth is out!
    kangin was not the one who started the fight!
    and we do not show blind support!

  4. Anonymous says:

    baek kyeong is not 1tym leader... =.=
    this article... something wrong...

  5. Chocoscopy says:

    Hey! What if I told you to go die when your placed in Kangin's situation, huh? He's a good guy, and he wasn't the one who started the fucking fight. =.=. He was trying to help and he didn't even try to lift a fist. WTF is wrong with you? And why drag the rest of SuJu into this argument? are you retarded? they weren't with him when this happened.

    Go get yourself more english comprehension lessons. retard. =.=

  6. Anonymous says:

    you have no right to say that about kanging... it is not his fault anyway...

  7. Anonymous says:

    just like anonymlous said 1tym's leader is teddy

    but the point is .. having a role model is a good thing but fans ( i sometimes do that too) forget that our beloved celebs are aLso onLy people like u and me who get into difficult situations in their lives .. that can happen to everyone

  8. Anonymous says:

    i just think Korea Times has written up this article a little too early. Now they look silly, don't they?

  9. sear says:

    Haters please all suck in h*ll.
    They really like to make things big eh?

    Kangin fighting!

  10. just dropped by, nice info and fans fighting for their idols, Awww.

    -cathy young

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