A Reaction to Michael Jackson’s Death

Written by   (author of Obvious Conclusions)

Last night, I sat down to watch the evening news with Brian Williams when I heard the news:  Michael Jackson is dead.

My first reaction was utter disbelief–he’s too young to be dead!  We received no clues, no warnings, no serious ill-health reports.  For a moment, I thought they must have the report wrong.  How could Michael Jackson be dead?

If I give some thought to this, I know another reason that the news is rather shocking:  I grew up listening to Michael Jackson.  Thriller was released in 1982 just as I was entering high school and, even before that, the Off The Wall Album was a mainstay on the turntable (that’s a record player to you youngsters).

This is different than say…listening to Bruce Springsteen.  I listened to him, but was well aware that generations before me also listened to Bruce.  Thus, I knew he was a lot older.

But Michael Jackson?  I would have always thought of him at, or near, my age group.  Thus, the shock is great when the person is in your age group.

My second reaction was just great sadness.  What a tragic, odd, awkward figure he evolved into.

I stopped listening to Michael Jackson after the many accusations of child molestations.  I couldn’t separate the song from the singer.  I would hear Man in the Mirror, a beautiful, inspirational song I once loved, and imagine Michael doing untoward things to little children.

True, he was never found guilty.  He paid a few people off but he was never actually sentenced for any wrongdoing.  But he just didn’t get it.  I remember this Chris Rock bit he did about Michael Jackson:

Whether he actually physically molested children or not, one thing is for sure:  he mentally disoriented them.  It’s just unnatural for a grown man to have sleep-overs in the same bed with children.

But, today the sadness gave way to the greatness.

Whatever he was or wasn’t doing is now a non-issue, and his music, which is truly sublime, can stand on its own.

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Richard Cummings

Richard Cummings is writer, traveler, and web content developer.

Get your copy of his latest book entitled Obvious Conclusions, stories of a Midwestern emigrant influenced and corrupted by many years living in San Francisco and abroad. It just received its first outstanding review "...reminiscent of David Sedaris or Augusten Burroughs" on Amazon UK.
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Richard CummingsA Reaction to Michael Jackson’s Death

Comments 3

  1. Cheyenne

    Martin Bashir finally admitted that everything he said about Michael Jackson and the wrong doings he was accused of, was all lies. There’s always 2 sides to every story, and the truth in between.

    I’ve done a lot of research, its what i do.
    And everything i found, just brought realization to my mind.
    He was innocent.

    Yes, he was a little different, but everyone is different. He had determination to do to follow out what he believed was right. He had two nose jobs, and a chin job. But if you think of many other celebrities, they have had much much more. Joan Rivers, and many others.

    He was just so famous, that the media used it to their benifet and many billions say lie’s about him. And that little boy, who accused Michael of the molestation, admitted his dad put him up to it, and they just were money hungry. And the other family was just after the same thing, he wouldn’t hurt his kids, or any child. They were the people he could trust, and believe in.

    He was just a very lonely, missunderstood, man.
    You should see the footage of the real Michael, it will blow you away.

    Wanna know something, I’m 15.
    When i was born, the accusations just came out. So alot of my generation believe he did that.

    But i know otherwise, i’ve been through alot in my life. And basically i’m an old soul, in a young body. I’ve done weeks of research and even more, researching this. And for someone from my generation, to believe and know that he’s innocent, it saying something.

    Thank you, Cheyenne.

  2. Mzpuzzlz

    are you on crack??! Please get your facts straight.. disoriented man?! Pay attention. Let me break it down for you – for the first 1993 allegation, PLEASE read the 1994 GQ article on Michael Jackson and understand why he paid them off. The boy’s father was recorded saying that he wanted money out of Michael and ruin his career because he didn’t pass on his movie script to movie directors. If someone molested your kid- would you accept for money or make sure his ass is thrown in jail?

    He was always the man who preached “Man in the Mirror” Read his interviews. He always sounded intelligent and was preaching justice and equality for decades. He was never disoriented. He has a skin disorder and wore makeup to cover it up. Big deal! Look up videos on youtube about his skin condition.

    For the 2nd allegations, watch “The Truth Behind Neverland” Long story short: a 13 yr old says he’s dying of cancer and Michael pays the bill and even gives money to the family every time they ask for it. The kid says he wants to sleep in his bed – Michael says that he can have his bed and that he’ll sleep on the floor. He pulls his other (25 yr old assistant) friend and tells him that he doesn’t trust the boy’s mother and that he should stay in the room with him. So there you have it. The boy and his brother sleep in his bed… and Michael and his friend sleep on the floor. Where’s the trauma? The kid was cured and Michael stopped giving him money and after the Bashir documentary aired, the kid was embarassed and told reporters that MJ molested him. Why would MJ molest him AFTER an embarassing documentary like that aired? He was acquitted in a fair trial. Read up on it.

    Shame on your for admiring him and then turning into one of those predators and criticizing him. The media hated him for being so successful around the world, across all color groups and changing pop culture. YOu should see the stories written about him. THe media and people like you killed him.

  3. uuuuuuu

    When you are a quiet, good, and generous person, there will always be idiots that want to take advantage.

    The world is a better place because of Michael…..he was so sweet and gentle and all the girls fell in love with him and mobbed him and that helped people to be more comfortable with our differences…..we have a long long way to go though. I am also guilty of being prejudice…..

    There is too much media out there giving quick headlines and biased documentaries instead of digging deep and presenting the facts.

    I loved Michael and his music and I will till the end. What else can we do but be happy that we loved him and ignore the people that can’t appreciate him?

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