Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga
There is great temptation to honor famous people as flawless. They're just like any of us, sometimes better and sometimes worse. People should be remembered in their entirety, whether living or dead.
I don't think that you can get a true understanding of Jackson without understanding all of the controversy. Even taking his lyrics like "Man in the Mirror" about a guy who looks in the mirror and doesn't like what he sees or a teenager out dating a girl who transforms into something ugly before her eyes, like Jackson seemed to do before our eyes. He saw the need for healing children as an act of healing the world because he himself was destroyed by the abuse of his childhood. He wrote Black and White as he changed his skin color because of his skin condition.
He was a megalomaniac who fed on the power he got in the world and then complained about it when it overpowered him. He tried to overcome the conventions of common decency like sleeping and showering with children as though it were all innocent and was destroyed by it. It seems to speak to the whole myth of radicalism in rock culture: sex, drugs and rock and roll. There is a reason why the convention are there.
At the same time he seemed like such a kind gentle soul naive and incapable of realizing the dangers of dangling a child over a balcony. He was probably the most famous man who ever lived and succumbed to those pressures. This is the world that Andy Warhol knew, a world governed by fame and celebrity, where the only thing that matters is what sells. Where people devoid of any sense of common decency are upheld as gods and pop icons. Ozzy, Slash, Jimmy Page had an affair with a fourteen year old girl, Madonna humping the stage. It becomes about the controversy and in the end it is hard to separate fact from fiction, controversy from reality, or the artist's life from his art. When it comes to knowing that world, Michael Jackson mastered it, and his life points out the fallacies of it as well. In the end, don't expect me to feel sorry for him or anyone when they get what they deserve. But he is dead now and should be forgiven for his transgressions and accepted for all that he gave or tried to give to the world. In the end, there was a lot more good than there was bad.