The King of Pop

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For a lot of people, myself included, Michael Jackson’s death brings up a lot of conflicting feelings. We mourn the musician whose incredible talent changed music forever. But we can’t help but think about the weirdo who dangled his baby over a balcony, disfigured his face with plastic surgery and was charged not once, but twice with child molestation. It’s hard to reconcile those two very different characters.

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But for myself, I guess I like to go with the old adage of dealing with grief by “remembering him as he was.” The Michael I loved best—the young, talented singer who danced on stage with his brothers as part of the Jackson Five, who moonwalked into pop culture history with the string of hits off his Thriller album, who provided the soundtrack to my childhood—is the Michael I’ll remember.

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Because though he was a deeply troubled, fucked up individual who did many very questionable (and possibly criminal) things, he was also one of the greatest artists of our time. He influenced countless musicians and performers, and his music brought people of all ages, races and classes together. And for that, he will be truly missed.

For more, check out these two tributes by two of my favorite writers.

And now, I’d just like to share a few more of my favorite MJ songs. Enjoy!

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5 responses to “The King of Pop

  1. I was a big MJ fan back in the day, and while I have to admit he did some “weird” things later in life, I honestly believe his issues were a result of being emotionally and physically abused by his father and never getting help for that. The plastic surgery alone is proof of extreme self-loathing.

    Maybe I’m crazy, but I always felt really sorry for him (even during the trial) and have always tried to refrain from calling him names and making fun of him. I loved his music and am in awe of his talent.

    I hope the guy is finally at peace because he was most definitely one unhappy and lonely individual here on earth.

    • @brooke: I totally agree. I think he was incredibly messed up for a variety of reasons: religious pressure as a Jehovah’s Witness, physical and emotional abuse from his father, having his parents pimp him out since he was pretty much a toddler, dealing with immense fame at an extremely young age, never having the chance to have a real childhood or real friends. I feel sorry for him because honestly, I feel like he never really had a chance in hell of being a “normal” person. He was a troubled, tortured soul. Does that excuse any bad things he may have done? Certainly not. But I refuse to believe he was simply evil or weird. There’s far more to it than that.

      And yes, I hope he’s finally found some peace.

  2. A really lovely and fitting tribute, DZ.

  3. AGreenEyeDevil

    Well said DottyZ.

  4. I’ve already espoused elsewhere on the weird contradictions surrounding him, so I’d like to say that, as a news junkie, this is a fascinating thing to watch unfold. I got USA Today, and it had him on like two thirds of the front page, plus several more inside. Regardless of how you feel about him (and I have very mixed feelings as well), we haven’t had a death this big in some time.

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