7.08.2009

Just a thought

Maybe this is just me being a cranky pants, but is anyone else tired of all the Michael Jackson coverage? Especially since there are other things going on in the world that actually, well, matter? (This is not to say that Michael Jackson's death does not matter to the people who were close to him, because of course it does, but it doesn't actually affect the rest of us in any tangible way.)

Here's my beef: To me, this whole media frenzy is not even about him. It's actually about guilt. You heard me. Now that Michael Jackson is suddenly dead, everyone wants to talk about him and play his songs and love him and make a huge stinking deal about the whole thing. Three weeks ago, no one was talking about Michael Jackson except to wonder if his tour was going to be a train wreck or not.

But now, NOW, it's a different story. So even though there are actual, ongoing things happening in the world that could use our attention (hello, Iran), all anybody wants to do is make themselves feel better about the part where they called him Wacko Jacko and thought he was a child molester for the last however many years. I can't blame the media for this, because they are a business and they run the stories that viewers will tune in for. And clearly, viewers seem to have an infinite capacity right now for Michael Jackson.

When someone's dead, though, it's kind of late for the love-fest. Heaven knows it's too late to do the recipient any good. Maybe guilt can occasionally be a useful feeling. Instead of trying to absolve ourselves of it with these huge misuses of our collective energy and attention for someone who is dead and can't actually benefit from them, maybe we can just say to ourselves, "Huh. Now that this person is gone, I find myself remembering all of the good associations and memories, rather than the bad. I will use this feeling to remind myself to show more appreciation, kindness, and understanding for the people who are still in my life."

Is it just me who's been thinking this?

28 comments:

Mrs. Langeland said... [reply]

I have been so afraid to vocalize this (is it too disrespectful?) but I too share your sentiments!

At this time, I am reminded of when Mother Theresa passed away. It was in the midst of the Princess Diana tragedy, and Mother Theresa's death was almost unnoticed.

I think that society/the press's priorities are a little wacko.

What a shame!

Laura said... [reply]

Completely agree. In fact, I've been saying pretty much the same thing since the day he died. I'd (stupidly, perhaps) expected it all to blow over within a day or so, and when the coverage just continued, growing bigger and bigger everyday, I was flabbergasted.

coolmom said... [reply]

People in Hollywood will do anything for publicity, especially their own. It's not even about Michael Jackson, it's about "maybe I can get some good coverage by getting in on the act". I remember when Sonny Bono died and had been remarried forever and suddenly Cher held a press conference in his hehalf. Cher, who probably hadn't spoken to him in 20 years other than to say something mean about him. I am sad for MJ's loved ones.

CoolBoy said... [reply]

I agree with Mom, I don't think anything past the first day or two this has had anything to do with Michael Jackson. For the News-producers it's just something to keep the watchers tuned in (Iran potentially being in the middle of a revolution is so last week!) and for the watchers it's an easy cause to get into for a while.

If people were suddenly to be worried for the people in Iran, there's the possibility that they could become morally/ethically obligated to do something, maybe even spend money or make a change in lifestyle. If they jump on the bandwagon of grieving Michael Jackson, they have the illusion of participating in a cause emotionally without any of that pesky work. All they have to do is feel a tiny bit bad. Nothing more required. Gotta love that.

Hiccup MeL said... [reply]

I completely agree with you. Amazingly put. Thank you for being the "voice of reason". :D

hannah said... [reply]

I totally agree. My husband actually said when he found out he died, "The world is now THAT much better without Michael Jackson in it." Mean...

Anyway...I am sick of the coverage.

Maree said... [reply]

Amen!!! I'm sick to death of hearing about Michael Jackson. He's getting WAY more media coverage than things of global import, and I'm actually ready for the media to report the NEWS. Thanks for saying what has been on my mind for 2 weeks now. ENOUGH already! BTW, I didn't even know he was gearing up for another tour until he died.

goddessdivine said... [reply]

I'm annoyed about the following things:

1. The wall-to-wall coverage. Hey, what about that cap and tax bill passed in the House that day?! There are certainly much more important things to fret over than what's going to happen to Neverland.

2. Him being touted as a 'hero'. A great musician and entertainer, sure; but a hero? That's a stretch. (Sorry, but he exhibited weird and not normal behavior.)

3. I'm so tired of the race card.

4. The obsession with celebrities and the glamorizing of their lives.

I have to think that Farrah Fawcett's loved ones have been feeling like chopped liver.....

Scully said... [reply]

Amen! Obviously he had a huge impact on the pop culture landscape, both talent-wise and behavior-wise, but at some point it becomes distasteful. Especially in light of all the other news/global happenings/general insecurity of the world. Although that could be WHY everyone is focused on this - not as intensely discomforting and/or scary.

Britley said... [reply]

I just don't like how the world is obsessed with and idolizes people who lived sad, horrible lives.

I mean, Jackson, whether or not he actually molested boy, did let them sleep in his bed. EW!

And the football player that died, all his teammates are talking about how wonderful he was, but he was cheating on his wife when he died. I think that's horrible! I don't want to hear about people with depressing, ugly lives. I bet Michael is happier to be gone!

Elise said... [reply]

Agreed. The thing that irks me is the sheer amount of STUFF that people are dropping off at remembrance cites. Think of all the money that could go to a good cause that, instead, is going to buy a 6 foot tall stuffed bear. Does a dead MJ really appreciate six foot tall stuffed bears? I think someone in his family could have been on their toes and said "Michael really loved the [such and such] foundation and he would love it if, instead of flowers etc., you would donate to this cause." At that point, I might consider putting in my two cents. But definitely not now.

j said... [reply]

I think I would be more bothered if I'd bothered to turn on the TV in the last week or so. Honestly, the 9 year old version of me would be appalled at how little TV I'm watching these days. I saw lots of Facebook updates yesterday from friends watching the funeral and I thought "am I the only one with a job?"

Mrs. Clark said... [reply]

So goes the cult of celebrity. And I think my life is mediocre--at least I have better things to do than idolize a movie star, pop singer, or model. Or princess. I just feel sorry for the kids, and the dead parents, insofar as their lives were cut off before their children were raised.

Angela Noelle said... [reply]

Your words are perrrrrrfection.

Z's Wife said... [reply]

100% agreed. In fact, I was so appalled by how many people gave a crap about celebrity death on my facebook friend list that week, that I posted this:

Sure, 3 celebrities have died this week but how many Airmen, Sailors, Soldiers and Marines have died this week? There are far better things and people to be concerned about... why not learn THOSE names? (I guess that's the proud military wife in me!)

No one responded to that though, which was sad. However I do know every single one of my friend's favorite MJ songs and/or memories. The funniest quote I did hear in regard to all the deaths though (sorry, it WAS funny!) was this:

"They say deaths come in 3s. Leave it to Billy Mays to throw one in for free!"

Jenny said... [reply]

So annoying. Like I even care about Michael Jackson. One person wanted to talk about it with me and kept pushing it as hard as I tried to resist and I finally told her that only people who are getting paid to talk about him are and no one is paying me so I had to go.

Taren said... [reply]

i completely agree. and it so fake! if everyone loved him so much why didn't they treat him like this when he was alive? all anyone did was make fun of him and expect the worst. it's sad.

Th. said... [reply]

.

Off topic, but have you seen this?

april said... [reply]

amen, sista!!!

for the record - i was much more influenced by farah fawcett in my youth than michael jackson. i wanted to be a charlie angel's. i remember in middle school thinking that someone's michael jackson's earrings was a bit weird. i can barely stand looking at a recent picture of michael jackson - so i'm so ready for this to be old news.

Jen, RN said... [reply]

I completely agree!!! I heard on the radio that since his death he's had the number one record sales on amazon.com (I think)-he probably could have used that before he died. And yes, the coverage needs to end-they keep showing the same 5 pics over and over again and it's getting really old....

Science Teacher Mommy said... [reply]

It is like all the molestation stuff never even happened. So I guess, if you are a pervert, it doesn't matter as long as you are famous and the die. I will keep an off-color and hilarious joke to myself (here).

I will say, however, that growing up we had both the Triller album AND tape. I had every word memorized from every song and my friends and I would watch Friday Night Videos (BEFORE cable existed) at every sleepever just to see the awesomeness that was the Thriller video, though we were happy to settle for Beat It. I thought Billie Jean was the nastiest song I ever heard, though I had no idea why. So while, yes, this might be a fond memory is really was like 20 years ago.

I was just thinking of the Diana/Mother Theresa thing too. I have sometimes wondered if that sweet nun was taken that week because Diana's was the only death that could have overshadowed hers and the publicity would have made her dear old soul very uncomfortable.

mj said... [reply]

I don't really watch TV (we don't have cable and only one network channel come in) so I haven't felt the annoyance, but I do think there was something worth mourning there (and not just b/c I have the same initials -- total coincidence!) Michael Jackson's whole life is a seriously sad cautionary tale of the loss of promise and innocence. I think it can be useful to reflect on the damage that can can result from cutting childhood short, and not dealing with serious self esteem and mental health issues. I can understand people clinging to the drama because here he is years later in debt and virtually friendless preparing his comeback tour and it never happens. Plus, he did produce some fantastic music back in the day. To call him a hero seems pretty misplaced though. Maybe a tragic hero.

Anyway I'm sure watching it all dragged out over a week would be obnoxious and I'd probably be really sick of it too if I had seen actual footage.

Bean said... [reply]

I agree!

chosha said... [reply]

I found the incessant coverage annoying. I also didn't like the way they always used an image of him when he was young and still black, as if by picturing him that way they were erasing the last two decades of his life.

As I said on Facebook when it all went down, I didn't really feel much when he died because to me the King of Pop, the singer/dancer that I did truly think was amazing at one point, passed away a long time ago. The man who was so creepy in his behaviour with kids (and worse if the accusations are true)? Him I won't miss.

I liked this article: respect without sugarcoating the rest of what everyone was thinking: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/nelson-montana/after-all-is-said-and-don_b_228540.html

beckyww said... [reply]

If he had any other child molester/druggie - I doubt there's be the attention. Fame buys blind adoration.

Dirty Diana said... [reply]

Hey Lamewads!

If you don't like the coverage, don't *!&%ing watch it.

Michael Jackson is a cultural icon. As the creator of the biggest selling album of all time 100's of millions of people have in some way been touched by his music.

The drama of how his life unfolded holds interest for many, and it's not a new development that our society has an unhealthy voyeuristic interest in the lives of celebrities. Michael Jackson celebrity is about as big as it gets.

As a kid I was amazed by the sheer creativity of what Mr Jackson brought to the world, and touched by the message in some of his music.

As an adult I still appreciate that talent and wonder at the ability he had in the 80's to create music that the world loved.

His personal life is for no one but God to judge. Guilty or not, he was never convicted of any crime.

Melissa said... [reply]

I am disturbed at the continuous coverage. I think people focus on the celebrity obsessed news because it's more entertaining than real news. It's all a matter of escapism.

I feel terrible for his family and their loss, but it truly is a personal thing for them. The rest are voyeurs.

Kristy said... [reply]

Can I just push everyone up over the edge with one more MJ story?

When my husband was 8 or 9 years old, he walked into his third grade classroom with a Michael Jackson t-shirt on and there was an audible gasp. There was such a flip-out about said t-shirt that teachers had to get involved. I can't think of anyone else that has been that big...
I also haven't turned on the tube and tuned in, so my nerves aren't as frayed as everyone else that commented.

I hope he's finally found some peace. His sounded like a miserable life.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...