Saturday, July 11, 2009

Michael Jackson: A Call for Insight, Understanding, and Action

As the world responds to the death of Michael Jackson, we must remember to open hearts to the importance of insight, understanding, and action. Jackson was a creative genius that touched the world through his music, dance and fashion, as well as through his dedication to philanthropy. Commonly referred to as the King of Pop, he is considered one of the greatest entertainers who ever lived.

For over 40 years, Jackson influenced culture throughout the world with not only his voice and dancing but trademark sequin glove, red leather jacket and his black fedora. Children across the globe imitated his every move as they watched his captivating videos.

Jackson was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame twice, tallied 13 Grammy Awards, 13 number one singles and the sale of an astonishing 750 million records. His 1982 Thriller album is the best selling release of all time with other best sellers including:

  • Off the Wall (1979)
  • Bad (1987)
  • HIStory (1995)

Jackson donated millions of dollars to charities. He founded the Heal the World Foundation in 1992 which was inspired by his song of the same name. This foundation enabled him to airlift more than 46 tons of supplies to Sarajevo, institute drug and alcohol abuse education and donate millions to impoverished children. The following songs convey his passion for helping those in need:

We Are The World (7:10)
Man In The Mirror (5:21)
You Are Not Alone (5:45)
<A HREF="">Play the clip on YouTube</A>

Despite his deserved recognition for these accomplishments, Michael Jackson was a troubled soul who spoke candidly with Oprah Winfrey in 1993 about the challenges of a not-so-normal childhood, abuse at the hands of his father, and his admission that he often cried from loneliness. He was also accused of child sexual abuse—which he vehemently denied and was acquitted on all counts. Due to the stress of these allegations, compounded by chronic pain resulting from a stage accident and from joint inflammation associated with lupus, Jackson began a downward spiral with painkillers. This addiction led to the deterioration of his health. The tabloids were merciless and cruel with the coverage of Jackson's trials and tribulations.

It is all to easy to make rash and vindictive judgments on the life of Michael Jackson. More importantly, his creative and charitable contributions to the world must be appreciated. The realities of his troubled soul, especially his childhood abuse, loneliness and prescription drug abuse must be responded to with insight, understanding and action to prevent these tragedies in the lives of others, especially the young. The words of Michael Jackson in his song Have You Seen My Childhood, which he described as the most intimately honest and autobiographical of his career, must remind us of the importance of molding the hearts of our children through our love, guidance and affirmation.

Finally, it is important to remember the humanity of Michael Jackson through the heart of his own 11-year-old daughter Paris, who touched millions at her father's memorial service while fighting back tears, by proclaiming:

"I just want to say, ever since I was born, daddy has been the best father you could ever imagine, and I just wanted to say I love him so much."


Have You Seen My Childhood Click here to visit site
Vincent Bove Blogs on Drugs Click here to visit site



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