Yet, I loved his music. The Jackson Five was the sound track of my youth on the banks of Lake Michigan; Rocking Robin, Never Can Say Good Bye, I'll Be There, Ben. And then later, Thriller, Billy Jean--- and its hard for me to ignore his claims of a violent childhood, his real fear of his father. The mother who apparently did nothing. He was the goose who laid the golden egg. The little boy ticket out of the south side of Chicago--- Gary, Indiana. A real cesspool of a city.
How do you reconcile these things, the brilliant music, the shattered childhood, his own pedophilia? Do we stop reading Anne Sexton's poetry because she allegedly abused her own child? Do we stop reading Ezra Pound because he was virulently anti-Semitic? Do we stop listening to R. Kelly? Chris Brown? For the longest time, after he married his step-daughter, I boycotted Woody Allen's films. But recently I watched Annie Hall and wept.
There seems to be no easy reconciliation, and maybe there doesn't have to be--- in the words of Walt Whitman:
Do I contradict myself? Very well, I contradict myself. I am large. I contain multitudes.
Michael Jackson contained multitudes. For me, my love for his music, remains fixed in the late 1960's and early 1970's. The little boy, with the perfect Afro, and the voice of an angel.