I’m fucked off. I mean, it doesn’t make too much change from my resting personality, but I’m really fucking pissed off today. And this week. Actually, ever since ‘Leaving Neverland’ and all of its surrounding press aired.
Michael Jackson, for decades now, has been accused of sexual assault on various minors. Their claims have been supported by his staff who were eye-witnesses to his crimes, and even his sister. And yet, in the wake of the harrowing documentary following the separate ordeals of two of his targets (James Safechuck and Wade Robson), so many of us are refusing to listen to and believe their stories.
I don’t care how much you love his music. R Kelly released some incredibly popular records, but that didn’t stop him from being a paedophile and a rapist. Harvey Weinstein and Woody Allen produced and directed some award winning films – and guess what? They are still shitty, horrible people. Yes, Michael Jackson was talented. But so are so many of us. The main difference being that the vast majority of us haven’t been accused of sexual abuse.
The man is dead. All those ‘protecting’ his memory and legacy are deluded. Protesting to ‘let him rest in peace’ is offensive to those that he’s left behind. These are people who cannot LIVE in peace following the damaging actions of Michael Jackson, but no, you’re right, let’s make sure he’s having a lovely peaceful time now he’s now he’s passed away.
Film-maker Dan Reed with Wade Robson, left, and James Safechuck. Photograph: Taylor Jewell/Invision/AP
Leaving Neverland is being portrayed by so many as an attack on the memory of Michael Jackson. It is not. “It is a detailed, four-hour study of the psychology of child sexual abuse, told through two ordinary families who were groomed for 20 years by a paedophile masquerading as a trusted friend. It’s a mask that is often used by predators, whether a priest, a teacher, an uncle. This time the man behind the mask just happened to be Michael Jackson.”
YOU CANNOT PREACH ‘BELIEVE VICTIMS’ AND THEN PICK WHICH VICTIMS YOU BELIEVE. IT’S ALL OR NOTHING. Do you know what’s so shit? Being a sexual assault survivor and watching your friends defend and accused abuser. Just because he’s talented. And dead. Not because they know any different, but because they’ve actively decided not to believe the testimonies of men who were abused as children. Children. Little boys between the ages of 7 – 14 mentally and physically abused. I urge you to think about the children in your life. If this were their story, would you still deny them space because their abuser had a hit song that you used to dance to at your school disco? In desperate attempt to re-live his childhood, Michael Jackson has stolen those of his victims.
I’ve also seen stories shared of MJ’s other child friends coming forward and claiming that he never laid a hand on them. And there’s no questioning believing them. Really? In the most simple of terms, that’s like claiming that, because it didn’t happen to you, it couldn’t have happened to anyone.
By defending this man, you are denouncing the claims of the courageous people who came forward. You are making it clear that you side with abusers. You are making it more difficult and less likely for people around you who may have previously suffered or are currently suffering in similar situations to come forward and tell their story. Like so many similar situations of the past, it’s become the norm to turn your back and look the other way. How tragic and cruel it is that, in 2019, so many are still claiming that the oppressed are guilty until proven innocent while their oppressors are innocent until proven guilty.