MJ: Misunderstood genius or master manipulator

Michael Jackson is a name which usually attracts extreme reactions, whereby people either consider him to be exploited by the media, or think that he was a master media manipulator who twisted almost each fact to his own advantage. Before judging Jackson, it is imperative that we understand the events which occurred throughout his life. Jackson had a dominating father, who used to beat him up when he didn’t obey his orders. Additionally, his first sexual experience was at a young age at strip clubs. These events, coupled with his first girlfriend, Tatum O’Neal, who allegedly tried to force herself on him, were the reasons Jackson could never have a normal childhood and tried to replicate that throughout his life.

Michael Jackson- Still making headlines | Image Courtesy: Google Images.
Michael Jackson – Still making headlines.

Jackson was forever plagued by two debilitating allegations, namely, child abuse and his operations. It is important to note, however, that even though he was accused twice on multiple counts of child abuse, none of them were ever proved. As for his operations, multiple doctors have publicly accepted that Jackson suffered from a rare skin disease, vitiligo universalis, and had not undergone any skin lightening operation. The only operation which can be proven conclusively, and was further admitted by Jackson on the documentary presented by Martin Bashir was his nose operation. However, as disclosed by Jackson, he decided to get the operation after years of ridicule hurled by his father on his appearance, especially his nose.

Jackson was a pop star in his own right, and attraction from the opposite sex is inherent for a man with his stardom. However, his early experiences with women definitely left a dent on his psyche and he could never enjoy a long-lasting relationship. Although his relationship with Lisa Marie Presley did end up in a marriage, it ended soon enough amidst rumours that he had used her to downplay the intensity of the child abuse allegations. His marriage with Debbie Rowe was heavily criticized by the media, though none of them ever accepted that the marriage was a sham. Additionally, Jackson was a dedicated father, and although his marriage with Rowe could not last for long, it gave him two children which he cared for through thick and thin.

The constant discussion of Jackson’s apparent guilt is both unfair to his talent and his musical innovations. He is credited as the inventor of the pop genre and introduced and inspired countless contemporary dance steps. He holds countless records on all the major music charts and can safely be termed as the most successful musician of all time. His professional career and the musical legacy he leaves behind are nothing short of legendary. It is a shame though that whenever Jackson’s musical brilliance is discussed, the blemishes on his personal life are not usually far behind. It is thus imperative that people, no matter what they think about Jackson’s personal actions, give the body of work that he has left behind the due respect that a musician like him deserves.