Fans of the most famous K-pop boy band BTS have been preoccupied for some time now since they learned that all of them are most likely going away to join the military forces. While not all countries apply this, in South Korea military service is mandatory. Long story short, BTS is not exempt from the military.
The law in Korea states that every male in the country must enlist in the military between 18 and 28 years of age, but, if you are a proud member of ARMY you must know that Jin is the oldest and he is due to enlist. So, how come he has not joined the military? The fate of the band is in hands of the South Korean Legislature.
For those unaware of what has been happening with BTS, exemptions are made for those who are suffering from some debilitating conditions as diabetes, but there are also exemptions for people with 'exceptional skills'.
Most prodigy musicians and ballet performers usually get exemptions but also athletes who have won Olympic medals, and if they won a gold medal even better. In simpler words, exemptions are made for those who make their country proud and the South Korean Legislature has the last word about this.
Talking about Jin, Suga, J-Hope, RM, Jimin, V, and Jungkook, fans think it is quite strange that South Korea is still debating about whether the Bangtan Boys should be exempt or not. They are the first Korean band to get nominated and currently hold a second nomination, have broken some Guinness World Records, and are the first Asian group to win at the American Music Awards.
Also, BTS and its popularity have brought the world to take a deeper interest in their country, language, Korean movies, T.V., fashion, and food. According to NPR, BTS is bringing in an estimated $5 billion a year to South Korea which is half a percent of the country's entire economy.
Having this in consideration, back in 2020 BTS introduced a bill to delay their mandatory enlistment until they were 30, and fortunately, it was approved. However, now that Jin is reaching the age fans are starting to feel uncertainty around the situation since the South Korean Legislature has not declared if they are exempt or not.
The K-Pop idols introduced a new bill to ask for exemption but apparently, the bill has been revised but the South Korean Legislation has failed in making any progress. The worst scenario for them would be to enlist and if you are wondering for how long, service in the Army and Marines is 21 months, the Navy is 23 months, and the Air Force is 24
According to a new report from Yonhap News Agency, South Korea’s National Legislature is divided over the idea of BTS not enlisting in the mandatory military services.
“Regarding the revision bill, the defense ministry cannot help but consider situational variables. The one that we face at this very moment is the situation caused by the shrinking population,” Boo said according to Yonhap News Agency.