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South Korean rapper PSY, whose real name is Park Jae-sang, is now at the center of controversy, since his anti-American past surfaced online Friday. He is scheduled to perform at a Washington, D.C. charity event with President Obama in attendance. The White House said that Obama and his family will still attend.
PSY’s participation in anti-American protests in 2002 and 2004 came to light on Friday, following a report from Mediate. In the 2004 protest, PSY rapped parts of the song “Dear American,” in which he sang “Kill those f***ing Yankees who have been torturing Iraqi captives.”
The “Gangnam Style” singer quickly issued an apology Friday afternoon, writing, “While I'm grateful for the freedom to express one's self, I've learned there are limits to what language is appropriate and I'm deeply sorry for how these lyrics could be interpreted. I will forever be sorry for any pain I have caused by those words.”
According to The Associated Press, PSY went to college in the US and said in his statement that he understands the sacrifices Americans have made to keep other nations safe. He also stated that he had performed before American servicemen recently.
“And I hope they and all Americans can accept my apology,” he noted. “While it's important that we express our opinions, I deeply regret the inflammatory and inappropriate language I used to do so. In my music, I try to give people a release, a reason to smile. I have learned that thru music, our universal language we can all come together as a culture of humanity and I hope that you will accept my apology.”
The reports about PSY’s past come just before he is set to perform at the “Christmas in Washington” charity concert on Dec. 21. The White House, which noted that it had no role in picking the acts, said that the president and his family will still attend, as is customary.
PSY’s “Gangnam Style” is the most-watched video in YouTube history with over 900 million views.