He named a song “Pretty Young Thing”

It’s complicated, isn’t it? The motherfucker. Michael Jackson. Maybe the greatest performer of the 20th century. The King of Pop. MJ. Totally a child molester.

We’re not in denial of this, are we? That MJ is both one of the greatest entertainers to ever grace a stage and a horrible creep who ruined lives of who knows how many children? This motherfucker sang “She’s Out Of My Life”. It’s incredible. How the guy’s voice breaks right at the end? Have you heard Off The Wall? Never mind Thriller. If he had died in 1980, right after Off The Wall with that catalog of work he had with the Jacksons, he still would be a legend. Fucking “Show You The Way To Go”. Legendary.

Can you even listen to any of that stuff now?

The first time MJ was accused of child molestation in the ’90s was the beginning of the end. Nobody wanted to believe it. He was the man. We all knew he was a weird dude but kid diddling? Nah, not MJ.

But he did it. And we all knew he did it when he announced he’d come to a financial settlement with the child and his family. Something like $15 or $18 million. And a financial settlement meant the kid couldn’t testify. That’s when we knew. Because that settlement could have been spent on a legal team fighting those charges. But he bought his way out. And then MJ got weirder and weirder. A sham marriage to Lisa Marie Presley. The HIStory album release with the giant MJ statues all over the world, the Russian military march and the little boy(?) that screams “Michael I love you!” The song where Michael starts off singing “Have you seen my childhood?” And his face looked like it was melting and his nose looked like it was falling off.

That video for “You Are Not Alone” (written by R. Kelly, of course) where he was half-naked with Lisa Marie even though he had vitiligo and clearly seemed to be allergic to sunlight and his own bride. We haven’t even gotten to the part where he dangled his kid over the hotel balcony yet. God tortured both him and us by not taking MJ’s life long before 2009.

This is what happens when you make an icon god out of a flawed human being. Newsflash: we’re all flawed. Fame is a life-changer and a mind-fucker and being deified by your own business turns you into an out-of-touch weirdo who thinks people want you to build giant statues to yourself while dressing like an authoritarian biker lord to promote an album. And having kids who aren’t your own sharing your bed is fine if you drink a little wine first and keep the money rolling in.

But it is complicated. Cancel culture doesn’t change the times I had with that music. I saw Motown 25 live as a kid when MJ debuted the moonwalk. I’ll never forget that. I’ve had so much fun listen to those songs. That was my childhood, your childhood, our childhood. And we can’t undo that. But we can’t forgive the guy either. It’s not like “P.Y.T” undoes all the damage he did to all those children.

If you’re still listening to MJ, that’s one thing but if you think he didn’t molest those boys you are wearing tinfoil on your dick.