So I finally need to write about this whole thing. The day I found out, it just made me so depressed, it was ridiculous. IDK
So here's, I guess, what happened. In June, someone tipped the police of that GD has used marijuana, so they took him in for testing. The urine test was negative, but the hair test came back positive for a small amount. At first GD was bewildered, but then he remembered something that happened in Japan at the end of May, when he'd been at a club with some Japanese industry people. In the restroom, a Japanese man, who said he was a fan offered GD a smoke. GD accepted, believing this was the friendly thing to do. After a few drags, he realized that it wasn't a regular cigarette, so he quickly threw it in the toilet. The police decided, based on that evidence, his age, the fact that it was a first offense, and the lack of criminal intent, to , He also 'was regretful, and stated that he had never meant to nor, did he ever want to, smoke marijuana.'
Obviously, it wasn't a big deal at the time, given the fact that this decision was made in July, and they just released the news about it right now. (There are a lot of theories about why it took them so long, a popular one being that it was a cover up for a government gambling scandal that broke at the same time as the news about GD.)
So far, the backlash in Korea has been minimal. Professionally, at least. Since he wasn't actually charged, he's not banned from any TV stations, and none the companies using him as a spokesperson have dropped him. Because, as all their statements boiled down to, the fact is that having GD as their spokesman has brought those companies major cash, which they would like to continue to rake in. Publically, people have been pretty mean, but then again, that's netizens for you. The coldness of the Korean fans has actually shocked me though, from what I've been able to read of their comments.
And then there's Japan. Japan is a whole different story, and YG was naive to ever think that things would go as smoothly as they did in Korea. For one thing, Japan is probably the worst place for GD to have smoked pot - regardless of whether he did it on purpose or not, because they are so strict about celebrities with any sort of history of drug use at all. After all, recently Russell Brand, who is a former drug addict, was barred from entering the country, and he's been very publicly clean and sober for many years now.
Japan - and especially AVEX, who release BB's music in Japan, have one way of dealing with artists involved in a scandal, especially a drug scandal: They cancel releases. And that, of course, is what they did. Not only was GD&TOP's Japanese debut single canceled, but Big Bang's best collection album, and Concert DVD's releases were also postponed. As for the debut single, Avex's release said it was canceled, YG's said it was delayed, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
People in Japan are very very bitter about this whole thing, for two reasons.
1) GD said that the pot he accidently smoked was given to him by a Japanese fan. So everyone is angry because they see him as 'blaming a Japanese person/Japan for his crime'.
2) Many people are comparing this incident to the drug scandal of Noriko Sakai, a Japanese singer who had all of her records removed from stores after the news broke. It's a stupid comparison, because the cases are totally different (Noriko was actually a habitual drug user, and it was some sort of stimulant) however, Noriko is a much beloved singer with hundreds of lifelong fans, so people are pissed that their beloved Noriko was punished so much when GD seems to be getting off comparatively lightly.
Most of the angry people are wishing for GD to be barred from the country.
Honestly, it's been really heartbreaking to see the reactions of everyone in both Japan and Korea. People are being so cruel, and so cold, and so racist. A lot of international fans have commented that if you're caught using drugs once - no matter what the drug, because in both Korea and Japan marijuana is judged the same as heroin - you are branded a drug addict and therefore a bad person. I"m sure there are a lot of fans in both Japan and Korea who are standing by him, with open minds, but unfortunately they've been overshadowed by all the hateful assholes.
For the most part the reactions of the international fans have been a lot more understanding, because a lot of us come from country where pot is legal and/or very commonly used and for the most part not seen as a really big deal, and where, more importantly, celebrities get away with a heck of a lot worse without any repercussions for their careers.
#STAYSTRONGGD is trending on Twitter, if that tells you anything.
So how do I feel about it all?
Personally, it's not a big deal for me, but it doesn't matter, because it is a huge deal in both of the countries where GD has a career/ has to live his life. I really just think that the whole situation is stupid and should never have happened.
There have been a lot of people out and out stating that they believe that GD lied, and while his statement does seem farfetched, I'm going to trust him on this one. He's too mindful of his (and the rest of BigBang's) careers to do something so detrimental to his career. I'm not a smoker so I don't know the social niceties of it all, and I have to say, if it was me, especially if I came from a country with stricter drug laws, it probably wouldn't have entered my mind that it was pot, either. That said, and while I do think you have to make some allowences for the fact that he was in a club, in a country where he doesn't speak the language, and had probably been drinking so his judgement was impaired... he should never have smoked anything from a strange, even if they said they were a fan. That's just stupid. I'm sorry, but it is.
And honestly, the whole aftermath is so fishy. Who the hell ratted him out? And why did it take so long for this whole story to come out?
I don't mean to say that GD didn't do anything wrong - because regardless of why it happened and what his intentions were, smoking pot is very very illegal in both Japan and Korea - but the whole idea that the government holds huge stories like this to release them to cover up its own scandals...I definitely believe that. Otherwise the timing is just too much of a coincidence.
IDK, the whole thing just makes me angry, last but not actually least, because I was really excited for GD&TOP's Japanese debut...
I'm just glad that he's got the other boys to support him, because so far, they have shown themselves to be there for him, and it's really heartwarming.
He's so talented, I really hope that his career can make it past all of this bullshit.