Sunday, August 16, 2009

MJ Death Blues, Reprise

I spent the weekend at BeatleFest *(Don't Ever Call It BeatleFest Again) and laughed my ass off with my oldest and dearest, Anne. Ronnie Spector (jail-bird Phil's ex) was there and didn't seem to impart any sadness over the imprisonment of her one-time husband. We didn't get a chance to ask her how many times he brandished a gun at her. Since she was in lock down most of the time, maybe he didn't have to wave a gun at her face.

The Hudson Brothers were there also. Always a treat! Anne said a couple stories had the ring of old vaudeville routines, but even if so, they were delivered with the Hudson particular brand of humor. And no need to mention Martin Lewis or Wally or Terri. I purchased several teen magazines from the 1960's and we laughed ourselves nearly to death as we looked back into our teenybopper lives.

But Anne and I had several long discussions about my recent posts and the Michael Jackson Death Blues. One thing became apparent. She will take over my life as I seem to have gone down the Stony End.

I don't really have any problem with that. Anne always has my best interests at heart. I know that. She has since she was 6--and it is always so clear to me when we talk for hours on end that she is a much better friend to me than I am to her. She always puts others before herself...and she is as smart as she is funny. Her heart is never in any place but a kind one.

After I dropped her off at home, I thought about some of the things we talked about. We had a discussion about Michael Jackson and she feels in her heart of hearts that he is/was a predatory human being who prayed on young boys. In her eyes, the travesty is that no one believed those boys whom he damaged--whether it was physically or emotionally. It falls right into the idea that female rape victims were historically brushed under the rug and not believed either.

When my son came home one day from baseball practice and wanted to quit because of sexually inappropriate remarks from his high school coach to the team, I of course believed him. I ended up going to the school board and making a formal complaint, for which I got some apology in a letter that was 4 lines long and a total joke. But Sean was off the team and that was that.

I think it is mandatory for adults to listen to children and believe them. I believe it is mandatory for police and hospital employees to believe a woman who says she has been raped.

So how can I believe Michael Jackson? Was he a victim of his own life? Yes. Did he set himself up for potential trouble? Yes. Did he intentionally hurt anyone? I think not, but people who's opinions I trust and admire believe he was a pedophile. And yes, a jury of his peers found him innocent in 2004--but the justice system is not infallible. So what do I think? How do I reconcile that I feel children should be believed and yet I feel that MJ was largely innocent?

I think I will not think about it. We love who we love. As the Elvis Presley fans have told the Michael Jackson fans, focus on the music and the dancing and the entertainer and the humanitarian. I believe I will place Michael Jackson in a separate compartment of genius and uniqueness. For if there is one thing I know, he is the last of his kind. There will never,ever, be another like him.

And I'll be damned....but his loss still bothers me. Perhaps it's our wires crossing at Anesthesia Avenue and Xanax Boulevard, I don't know. I do know that no matter what, Anne will get to the bottom of it.

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