A few days ago, the popular entertainment and news magazine uncovered the truth behind Kang Dong Won’s ancestry.
According to the post, Kang Dong Won is known to be the great-grandson of Chinilpa – a group of Koreans who were pro-Japanese and collaborated with Japan during the Japanese occupation in Korea. His great-grandfather Lee Jong Man gained immense wealth as he did mining business during the Japanese colonial period and was often dubbed as the ‘King of Gold Mining’.
In 2017, Kang Dong Won had an interview where he spoke highly of his grandfather. He stated, “My great-grandfather is amazing. His name is Lee Jong Man. He was the CEO of Daedong Industrial Company.”
According to the news posted by Dispatch, Kang Dong Won’s attitude have changed for the past 10 years as these days, the actor no longer mentions his great grandfather.
They uncovered the history of Kang Dong Won’s descendants which made the netizens frustrated and angry for his great-grandfather and Kang Dong Won’s attitude for allegedly trying to cover up the controversy surrounding his alleged pro-Japanese family history.
Dispatch made inquiries to the National Institute of Ethnic Studies which published pro-Japanese dictionaries. They also did an interview with the editorial chief of Yongchang and checked records of prostitution as well as read about the life of Lee Jong-man’s daughter, a book on the recollections of Lee Nam-soon.
Several netizens expressed their view that Kang Dong Won might not have been aware of his family history and that they shouldn’t have jumped into criticisms. As to whether or not the actor is aware of his family background, as he spoke highly of his great grandfather in the past, there was no official statement released yet.
This controversy recently resurfaced after the Korean movie portal, Max Movie wrote an article about celebrities related to the Chinilpa family members in celebration of Korea’s Independence Movement Day. Kang Dong Won is one of the celebrities mentioned on the list.
YG Entertainment, his current agency have received quite a few backlash from netizens as well.
One netizen posted, “I’ve only linked the Independence Movement Day article and they’re telling me its defamation of character. It didn’t create false information or put the blame. It’s written as history remembers it with no exaggeration. You can’t change history. There will be no future for those citizens who try to conceal.”
Another netizen commented saying, “Kang Dong Won is not criticized for being an offspring of Chinilpa. He’s criticized for speaking high of his great-grandfather Lee Jong Man who was Chinilpa. If he didn’t know then he should’ve apologized for his ignorance. It’s a problem that he’s stirring up anger by threatening legal action for defamation of character. It might be YG’s specialty to just report and delete all the posts, and that’s the biggest problem”, “It’s only going to get worse if he tries to cover this up. His label needs to stop”, “I’m getting goosebumps. I’m having a second take on Kang Dong Won. Is he stupid or just ignorant…”
Admin’s Opinion: Kang Dong Won is Kang Dong Won, Lee Jong Man maybe his grandfather but he doesn’t have anything to do with the past nor he has any control to change it. It is but natural to be proud of our family. Whatever background he may have, it wouldn’t change the fact that he is a good actor. He should have been criticized back in 2007 when he did that interview, why now? He may or may not be aware of his family background, but what right do we have to criticize? Everything happens for a reason, while Kang Dong Won sure have his reasons for not speaking about his family. It’s all in the past, let’s learn to forgive and forget. This time is a time for peace – let’s bury the scars of the past and move on.