Allegations of anal rape have taken us to another level of bestiality, beyond the accusations of mutual masturbation and plying of alcohol. They’ve upped the ante. They’ve had to. Because those ‘lesser’ allegations were discredited in a court of law during the trial that broke Michael’s heart and ultimately killed him. The maids quoted by Stacy Brown in his recent New York Post article, in which they spoke of their ‘recollections’ of times at Neverland, were dismissed off hand by the 2005 jury as “liars”.
We go again.
The allegations of anal rape have been chosen specifically to leave an indelible smear on the psyche of those that hear them. After such accusations, the most we fans can do in the short-term is mere damage control. In 2003, Michael wisely recorded himself being recorded by Martin Bashir and his team. And, as a riposte to the debacle that was the Living With Michael Jackson documentary, Michael distributed his own version of the interviews entitled ‘Take 2’, in which Bashir’s unethical techniques of sycophancy and bullying, combined with clever editing, were exposed. But the damage had already been done.
The discredited maids’ stories offered the slavering tabloid junkies nothing new. Tabloid tactics that smacked so recognisably of newspapers in 1993. Libellous fabrications plucked from the ether and attributed to ‘a source’. Reading their descriptions was akin to listening to someone detail the character of a mutual friend, a person you had known for decades, but who they have only recently become acquainted with. You know this old friend inside-out – their flaws, their tribulations, their virtues –and are therefore gobsmacked by the inaccuracy of this other person’s depiction of them. Besides, though Michael may well have got drunk and urinated in his porch – as far as compiling a case for sodomising a child is concerned – it doesn’t seem particularly relevant.
No-one is suggesting that there wasn’t something unique about Michael’s relationships with children. But, as I shall reiterate once again: in lieu of any evidence of wrongdoing, a person’s perspective on Michael Jackson is entirely a reflection of what the observer wants to see. My stance is that Michael was both as fragile and magical as an egg; as emotionally charged, yet as carefully crafted as a poem. He was the puppet Pinocchio that eventually realised his dream in becoming a flesh-and-bone human boy.
As children, we were all alchemists. We combined our ingredients of mud, grass and leaves, and with the mix we made cake. This was the magic that inspired Michael. When the mystery of the gravity-defying Smooth Criminal lean was made public by the press, Michael responded by wondering why anyone would want to reveal the mechanics and ruin the magic. His desires to prolong childhood and chase dreams were borne of the same principle. Revered movie director John Ford famously said, “If it’s a choice between the truth and the legend, print the legend.” A sentiment Michael very much agreed with. After all, it was Diana Ross that discovered the Jackson 5, right?
Sony have invested too much in their reinterpretation of Michael Jackson, for it all now to be ‘inconvenienced’. For better or worse, they understand that Michael is an industry unto himself – one that provides an opportunity for decades of profit-procurement – and the likelihood is that Sony will encourage the Estate to settle these latest claims out of court. Sony are extremely powerful, and have form – they misadvised Michael back in 1993, when they recommended he settle then.
Sony may have invested their money in Michael; but we have invested our hearts. We followed him devoutly as he vindicated himself in 2005. We will not allow our decades of stoic support to be undermined by greedy, immoral opportunists. Michael gladly assumed his responsibility as a gatekeeper for innocence. But, noticing that one has responsibilities is the easy part. Engaging with them is an altogether separate matter. It is our responsibility to engage in the defence of our voiceless hero against yet another systematic attempt at his vilification.
Yet, as I say: this is not about angles of perspective. This is about defending a good man – in light of the facts – not of faith.
Michael Jackson Anti-Defamation Group ‘Voice As One’ are organising a mass email protest against the serial MJ abuser Stacy Brown, who wrote the aforementioned article for the New York Post. For details, see Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/voiceasone or follow @voiceasone on Twitter.