*typed originally 7/7/2009, but not posted until 7/8/2009 (on www.facebook.com/jennsbook) due to respect for the memorial and a bargain I made with my facebook friends that I would give them this day (7/7) to blow up my page with no retaliation (see... I make good on my promises)*
I would be a fool to say that Michael Jackson's life was insignificant. I would be callous and rude to say that he doesn't deserve all the outpouring of emotion that has come his way in recent days/the past week. I would also however, be remiss in not noting that there seems to be some sort of mass delusion going on with the general public in deifying a man who hasn't really done much good in the past 15 years, and in fact has done quite a lot of questionable, if not downright WRONG things! It's quite reminiscent of a cult, to be honest with you. It's like people are purposely forgetting factual information (i.e. NOT SPECULATION) in order to feel closer to his legend, or something. It's very strange. I am not going to go into the multitude of lawsuits filed against him regarding molestation, and inappropriate touching or anything like that. Regardless of those sorts of dealings there are a MANY NUMBER of other things he has done, which would make him a pariah in pretty much any U.S. community, had he not been the bringer of the "thriller... thriller night!".
For instance, if I regularly had doctors frequenting my domicile, asking them for intravenous drugs, and having them administered to me while my 3 YOUNG CHILDREN were living with me, I'd have CPS on my ass in no time, and my children would be taken from me. If I invited the neighborhood kids over for punch and pie and they all liked me so much that they asked if they could spend the night, and I said yes, and their parents for some godforsaken reason though it'd be a good idea, and I got caught sleeping in the same bed with them... again... trouble for Miss Jenn. If I told a young boy that his cancer could be cured by drinking my "jesus juice", I might not end up in jail, but I'd most likely become the neighborhoods favorite person to hate. And with any luck a big-bad-bro might kick the crap outta me. If I died after these instances alone, I'm pretty sure there would be "hurrah's" of joy bounding from all over this god-fearing, self-righteous, moral country! There might even be defecation on my burial place. Surely spitting in the general direction of my corpse!!!
Being a celebrity does not absolve you of being human and having to account for your public indiscretions.
Yet, this man, who delivered 3 amazing albums*, none of them post 1987, is somehow absolved of such things because he's been everyones favorite media-circus-freak!?!?!? NO! Not OK. It's OK to remember him, but lets be honest about it at least. He wasn't some object, shining on a hill, to be glorified for all things that came after him. He was a sick man. I mean genuinely sick. He was a great artist, who blessed us all with some amazing work... who also was stunted psychologically to the point where he performed inappropriate acts with other peoples children (I don't care if he touched them or not, sleeping in the same bed with other peoples young children is NOT OK!!!) and was a drug addict. Is that so hard? They are both true, and they are both him. Just like "Thriller", "Bad", "P.Y.T.", "Man in the Mirror", "Scream", "The Way You Make Me Feel", "Beat It", "Bad", The Girl Is Mine", "Smooth Criminal", "Dirty Diana", "Don't Stop Till You Get Enough", and "Wanna Be Starting Something", were ALL HIS TOO!!!
Everything that was once great about him, is still here. In the words of his sister, "what have you done for me lately", Michael? He hasn't done ANYTHING worthwhile as of late, and NONE OF YOU KNEW HIM!!!!! You didn't hang out. It's not like he was someone who you met up with weekly for coffee and scones. Your regular everyday life is NOT effected by his passing. He wasn't one of your facebook buddies, and if he was, it was because someone who works under him was updating it on his behalf. Or maybe you signed up on his fanpage, I dunno. What we ALL know is that if he WAS one of your facebook buddies, it wasn't actually him on the facebook! I swear... if *I* died, someone you actually know, and someone who actually IS your facebook friend, I seriously doubt you'd be having the same emotional reaction that a lot of people have been having over the Michael. All of his amazing recordings, and videos, are still with us. That doesn't change. The memories that you have of how he effected your youth are still with you. Those memories don't die with him. They stay with you forever.
The man lived a tormented life, one filled with beatings, and controversy, and jealousy, and enabling, and paparazzi, and selfishness, and greed, and MASSIVE wealth, and isolation, and ignorance, and is something that not a single one of us could ever completely understand being that we weren't him. It is VERY likely that his death was a blessing. I can not imagine the daily torment he went through that he called a life. But to dismiss his flaws, and pretend he was some sort of untouchable deity for the sake of honoring his death isn't fair. If you truly love him, love all of him, and then try to reconcile why you think it's OK for him to be a drug addict with three kids but it isn't for your neighbor who lives 4 doors down. Or try explaining to your 40 year-old neighbor why you won't let your kids spend the night at his place, unsupervised.
*cuz lets all be honest here kids, everything after "bad", was worse. He did have a song here and/or there, but there wasn't another album post-"bad" that came even close.
I originally posted some links of articles here for reference, but I omitted them this time around.