On February 13, Son Na-eun, a member of the girl group 'Apink' was criticized for uploading a selfie on her Instagram. In the photo, she is smiling as she holds her smartphone. The sentence on her phone case read: "GIRLS CAN DO ANYTHING". While the words seem to express a similar idea to the more famous expression, “Boys, be ambitious!”, Son received several backlash. She suffered greatly from the malicious comments left under her photo, and in the end, she took down the post. The only reason for the cyberbullying was her advocating of feminism using the GCDA phone case. Does her experience sound familiar? It should, for just two years ago a female voice actor lost her job for uploading a photo of herself in a T-shirt that read, 'Girls Do Not Need A Prince' on her SNS account. Korean society has not improved over the last two years. Why are people expressing such rage over another’s phone case? Is it the fact that girls can really do anything that they feel fear? Do men believe they are princes?
The two above examples only highlight the life of Korean women. They live in a world of ridiculous restriction. Korean women must not promote women's rights. Even a miniscule connection to a feministic opinion can harm to their employment, safety, rights, and reputation. Personally, this reporter, too, has also been in the same situation as Son. As a reporter for the section Woman, I frequently feared reprimand that could damage my future due to the controversial issues I brought up in my articles. However, this fear is not limited to myself. A number of other SMT reporters have also expressed this concern. Despite the fear, we must present the news. SMT has given me the chance to stand up for all the other women out there who are suffering and have suffered. Working as a reporter for The Sookmyung Times, has given me the opportunity to both fight like a girl and write like a girl. While some may say this is a cowardly way to fight by sitting safely behind a desk, I am confident that my articles have shaped the ideas and behavior of my fellow Sookmyungians and given them much needed courage to keep on battling. I place the same wish in this issue of SMT. To my beloved fellow SMT reporters and SMT readers, you can do anything. I will always be with you in my writings as courage. Never fear and do all that you wish!
Han Lee Hyebin firstname.lastname@example.org