Western Carolinian Staff Speaks Out on Michael Jackson Passing

Shelby Harrell, Intern

When most people think of Michael Jackson, they think of the supposed “child abuse” he was allegedly accused of. What people don’t seem to acknowledge is the fact that Michael was never an abuser, but rather the victim of abuse for many years.

We tend to forget his childhood because we are so stuck on his past accusations. The fact of the matter is Michael was in-fact acquitted of the charges. Yes, he had money. Yes, he had his musical reputation to fall back on. But more importantly, he also had years of childhood abuse from his father tormenting him, thus taking a toll on his life.

Michael often cried from loneliness and even vomited upon seeing the father he was so
terrified of. He went from an adorable and impossibly talented little boy to a bizarre-looking and scarred and lonely middle-aged man. Why can’t people take those details into account when they accuse him of child abuse? Perhaps Jackson only wanted to be close to children because he envied their innocence of childhood, which he never had. We all know Jackson had his issues, you could always tell just by the sight of him. But for what it’s worth, now that the “King of Pop” is dead, maybe we should do him the honor of letting him rest in peace, without the alleged charges hanging over his grave. Michael may have lived in his own world, but it was most definitely a world which never harmed anyone. He was just trying to make the best of his life, which ultimately changed the music industry in time. His story, like his music, will live on forever. R.I.P. Michael J.

Adam Crisp, Intern

In the past few days, Robert McNamara died, The U.S. pulled out of Iraq, President Barack Obama signed a nuclear arms reduction plan with Russia and secured their help in Afghanistan (where US forces had the deadliest battle in over a year), 156 people have died in China protests, Vice President Joe Biden has said the U.S. won’t intervene if Israel attacks Iran, Al Franken won the disputed election in Minnesota, Rasheed Wallace is playing for the Boston Celtics, Steve NcNair was murdered, and even Kal Penn who was on the TV show “House” and movie “Harold and Kumar go to White Castle” was appointed an associate director at the Office of Public Liaison to help connect the president’s administration with Asian-American and Pacific Islander communities.

All of this, yet I can’t turn on a 24 hour news station without hearing two hours of commentators repeating, over and over again, the details about Michael Jackson’s death that could be summed up in three minutes. Last month, wasn’t he a creepy human being who, even if you liked his music, you wouldn’t let your kids play with? Hey Obama, why don’t you sign a bill that says any news on Michael Jackson can only be run for five minutes at the top and bottom of every hour, and anyone in violation will have to spend 24 hours in a room with only a bottle of whiskey and a knife, while having to endure Michael Jackson’s and Paul McCartney’s duet “The Girl is Mine” being looped and played for the duration of their stay? I know that’s a little harsh, but would it work? I think so.

Danielle Lightner, Photo Editor

From the sparkling glove, to the infamous moonwalk, Michael Jackson has certainly left his mark on the world as the greatest pop singer of our time. Whether you liked Jackson or not, his music and iconic style has and will continue to have an important part in not only the music world, but our world as a whole.

Growing up I was always intrigued by the constantly changing Michael Jackson and his music. In fact, my first real album experience came with his “Thriller” album. I remember putting the CD into the stereo, turning it up full blast and standing in my living room floor trying to imitate Jackson’s dance movements, including the famous moonwalk.

Although Jackson is considered by many to be a pop sensational icon, he has in many ways suffered at the hands of the public. It seems as though Jackson has always found himself in the midst of some form of tragedy or ridicule and his recent and mysterious death has been no different. In fact, his death has even induced us to open the old wounds of Jackson’s past. Even in death, Jackson can not seem to find rest from the ever so critical public.

As we begin to move on from Jackson’s death, and try to commemorate his legacy, I think it is important for us to realize that underneath his fame, Jackson was just a man. In the wake of Jackson’s last tragedy, we should all try to find the good in his life and remember the legacy he left us.

Sarah Bonner, Office Assistant

Michael Jackson’s death was very shocking news when it hit the airways and the news coverage has been relentless ever since. Is it really necessary to cover every detail of his life, analyzing and criticizing. He was a good person and he contributed a lot of time and money, so was my grandmother, she was an amazing woman. She did not have over two weeks of media coverage about her passing and Los Angeles did not pay for her funeral. Furthermore, when Michael Jackson was alive, it was okay to ridicule him, now that he has passed away everyone cannot stop talking about how wonderful he is and the sadness of the whole event. Why can’t people just leave Michael Jackson alone and just let him rest in peace.