[Masthead] Mostly Cloudy ~ 36°F  
High: 53°F ~ Low: 30°F
Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014

Michael Jackson: Icon or reflection?

Posted Thursday, June 25, 2009, at 10:50 PM

Michael Jackson: Icon of a generation -- or reflection of his generation?

I'd say it's a little of both.

The so-called "King of Pop." whose death has already become one of those "do you remember where you where when you heard..." events, lived a life that, in many ways, reflected his generation to an extreme.

Stardom -- innocence lost -- came at a young age. Then came the glitz of the overdone (for many of that time) 1980s. Add to the mix Jackson's apparently never-ending search for an identity. The plastic surgery went to a costly extreme, but the Jackson generation is, for many, the makeover generation.

Jackson seemed to be bombarded by hangers-on out to get his money and run. To a much lesser extreme, everyone from scammers to credit card companies do the same. They just don't manage your life like Jackson's string of managers.

Financial problems were supposedly piling up for Jackson at the end. America can relate.

For those of us in middle age, we watched Michael Jackson grow up with us. Successes and problems piled up -- as they did for all of us; ours were simply on a much smaller scale.

Today, a generation reflects -- and remembers.


Comments
Showing most recent comments first
[Show in chronological order instead]

This is really bad when so many people are crying

saying they dont know how they are gonna make it

instead of worring about try thinking how bad this world has become when u have people more worried and scarred over a man that was accused of bad things and gloryfiying one who was shot dead and having an affair,it dont matter what he did for people look how he demoralized his wife and kids feel for them its also ashame when a man

can go to jail for killing a dog but get what 3 mo for

killing a human the bible didnt say god created

a bull dog a poodle than put man here to serve them YOU HAVE TO B KIDDING

-- Posted by smileysam on Thu, Jul 9, 2009, at 10:56 PM

What has our society become when they look up to people like Michael Jackson and Steve McNair whose lifestyles were anything but moral? It is sad really . . . really really sad.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Mon, Jul 6, 2009, at 1:35 PM

Perhaps,Michael,Elvis,Marilyn,Judy,etc. garner excessive attention because they give off a sense of wounded innocence.

Their gifts as entertainers seem to have been purchased at the expense of their being normal people with normal lives.

They felt empty,fearful and owned by those who saw them as a commodity.

All the adulation in the world couldn't take the place of an ounce of true love and respect.

They may have had that unselfish,unalloyed caring but had they erected such strong barriers between themselves and the world that they couldn't feel the love?

Karl Malden,Billy Mays,etc. also died but after full lives.

All of these people touched lives.

Some have given us reason to wonder if fame and wealth are enough if the talent is eclipsed by the torment.

Too many of today's celebrities don't even seem to have the luxury of even the image of a golden childhood.

They may never become mythic if they become victims and self-parodies first.

I may be naive but I didn't really see Jacko the pedophile.

Instead,I was reminded of a teleplay Elizabeth Montgomery did.

She played a woman who spent decades in a coma only to awaken as if the years had never past and she was still a young teen.

One evening,she joins her niece's slumber party as if she were still sixteen and the uncomfortable young ladies were her peers.

But,she is physically an adult and her efforts to pick up where she left off are awkward and futile.

Still,she needed to finish being a child before she could start being a woman.

Was Michael a freak and abuser or was he trying to be a "real boy" and erase so much of what he despised in himself that he all but abandoned his humanity in the process?

None of the stars on self-destruct could have warped or ended their lives without a lot of enablers.

That's the funny thing about stars,,,

For all their glittering beauty,they are too distant for us to experience anything but their brilliance.

Sadly,they are unable to feel our warmth,either.

-- Posted by quantumcat on Fri, Jul 3, 2009, at 11:35 AM

Never met the man. Did not like his music. Too high pitched for my liking, then again so was Van Halen. But everyone knew who he was...

Why is it so difficult to stay on topic?

-- Posted by big daddy rabbit on Sun, Jun 28, 2009, at 2:52 PM

I think is passing was an unfortunate event. He was an object as far as the media was concerned and he, and many like him are what kept the tabloids and gossip magazines in business. He wasn't my favorite celebrity, or human being, but his life should be remembered for the records he broke, the charities who organized and donated to, and barriers he broke, not only in the music industry but for the nation as a whole. He and the siblings were popular at a time when many would have bet thousands on their collapse.

Michael Jackson was an entertainer. Role models should not be entertainers, and most have never claimed that position.

Truly sad that he was never happy with himself and was constantly trying to change his physical self. Oddly enough, those people who accused Michael of molestation have never said another word (publicly) since they got what they wanted, his money. $22 million to be exact.

-- Posted by nascarfanatic on Sat, Jun 27, 2009, at 12:30 AM

He was a talented artist in his day, but too bizarre to deserve the media attention he is being given. Even Wimbeldon had to get in on the overkill. Move on.

-- Posted by gottago on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 8:02 PM

I just dont see how people can idolize Michael Jackson so much . . . sad really.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 3:29 PM

Micheal Jackson is loved by many, and will be missed by his "TRUE" fans and loved ones. Their are always the same group of people that go after certain groups of celebrity when they come into money. Some day this will be realized and they will stay clear from those that like to prey on their type. RIP "The KING OF POP" Michael Jackson!

-- Posted by Momof3&3step&1gran on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 2:40 PM

The way I see it no one has to "claim" Michael's innocence. The parents did that when they dropped charges in lieu of money.

-- Posted by Dianatn on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 2:30 PM

You are the one claiming he was innocent, not me.

Yes, the parents should be beaten with a horse whip and dipped in alcohol as well.

-- Posted by quietmike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 2:21 PM

If he were truly worried about his name being drug through the mud, he would have stopped with the first pre-adolescent slumber party... or the second...

-- Posted by quietmike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 1:30 PM

And parents continued to allow their children to go after the first...and the second.....

-- Posted by Dianatn on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 1:37 PM

Seems to me the parents of these children are the ones who were guilty ..

-- Posted by Dianatn on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 12:23 PM

So, Jackson isn't guilty, but somehow the parents are?

That's a strange conclusion.

If he were truly worried about his name being drug through the mud, he would have stopped with the first pre-adolescent slumber party... or the second...

-- Posted by quietmike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 1:30 PM

I don't see Michael Jackson as a role model or a saint or someone that anyone should look up to.

I am sad that he died because I don't want to wish death on anyone but his death is not something that I will have "etched" in my mind for the rest of my life. I just don't see revering someone like him . . . they are far better people to look up to and be like. That is what is wrong with the world today though . . . we revere people like Michael Jackson instead of people like teachers and other every day heroes.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 1:17 PM

Billy Jean is not my lover. She's just a girl who thinks that I am the one, but the kid is not my son....

-- Posted by thementalist on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 12:50 PM

Hmmmm ..so you are saying because Michael didn't want his name drug thru the mud and he paid these people to keep it out of court he is guilty? Seems to me the parents of these children are the ones who were guilty ..if someone molested my child no amount of money would have made me drop the charges.If the charges had been true they could have gotten a conviction and the money! They only wanted Michael's money!!! Sleeping in the same bed with a child does not make you a pedophile!!! It may make you odd or strange and asking for trouble but in no means does it make you guilty.

-- Posted by Dianatn on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 12:23 PM

A celebrity tried in a southern california court was found not guilty? Will wonders never cease.

O.J. also comes to mind.

Jackson paid tens of millions to the families of those children. He also described sleeping with young boys as "very charming and sweet".

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk...

If he was innocent, why this behavior?

-- Posted by quietmike on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 11:15 AM

I believe Michael Jackson is and will always be an icon. Yes, he had some problems in the past. But if Michael's music wasn't around, there would be alot of bands in the pop music that wouldn't exist. Michael Jackson's music is popular now as it was when it was first recorded. My children and I all enjoy listening to his music. He will be missed.

-- Posted by -Beth- on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 10:51 AM

Lets hope there aren't young boys where Michael is going.

-- Posted by jim8377 on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 9:43 AM

ok Jim we heard you the first time you made this snide remark. But if I remember correctly the courts of law said Michael Jackson was not guilty unless you have other evidence that he was guilty please refrain from remarks that are not documented.

-- Posted by Dianatn on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 9:50 AM

Lets hope there aren't young boys where Michael is going.

-- Posted by jim8377 on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 9:43 AM

Don't forget David Carradine, we lost him as well.

-- Posted by Evil Monkey on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 9:07 AM

Not me.

-- Posted by jim8377 on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 6:52 AM

Hopefully there won't be any young boys where Michael is going.

-- Posted by jim8377 on Fri, Jun 26, 2009, at 6:46 AM

Michael Jackson was the King of Pop not just in America but Worldwide. His name was well known in every part of the world.

I hope we all remember Michael as the Great Star he really was instead of the tragedies of his life. I remember when Thriller came out it had to be the best of the best dance songs ever made...Billy Jean, Bad and Man in the Mirror are close behind. Nobody in the industry could out sing or out dance Michael...and to this day nobody has come close either.

The other tragedy of today was the death of Farrah Fawcett she lost her battle with cancer this morning. Farrah was the sex queen of the 70's with her beautiful hair that every woman wanted to imitate.

Ed McMahon Died on the 23rd, Farrah and Michael died on the 25th. We have lost 3 legends this week.

Good Bye Michael you will be missed but your music lives on in each of us.

-- Posted by Dianatn on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 11:17 PM


Respond to this blog

Posting a comment requires free registration. If you already have an account, enter your username and password below. Otherwise, click here to register.

Username:

Password:  (Forgot your password?)

Your comments:
Please be respectful of others and try to stay on topic.


David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.