Michael Jackson: Lost in a Cultural Neverland

'Don't try to make him normal' I was told. 'He's famous because he's not normal.'

ima

11/08/2009 08:06:30 AM

this site should be ashamed of themselves for posting rubbish like this on as their content...I thought this is a positive site, yet this article is quite negative, and since when are you the judge of anyone? what is your purpose with articles like this one? as to Mr. Rabbi S., you are PATHETIC..... what kind of a friend...rabbi....counselor are you ??? people come to you in confindence and you break it? so much for your CREDIBILITY of being a so called "confidant". do you go and trumpet publicly all of your patients' and friends' problems ??? SHAME ON YOU! no respect for you sir. all my respects to Michael Jackson's memory and to his family! and sincerest apologies for all the bad stuff they have to hear from all the "so called "friends" of Michael's!

kdomnick

02/08/2005 04:04:25 PM

Movie stars, popstars, kings, queens, and famous humanitarians have been "idolised" throughout history. But this does not make them into gods. People know the difference.

mikko

01/23/2004 10:00:30 AM

I believe in Michael Jackson's innocence. "Lies may run sprints, but the truth runs marathons."

nilpojsinaj

12/06/2003 01:18:14 AM

No gossips, priests here. Only M.J.'s stated words in interviews,which his lawyers should have blocked. By the way, the poor are related , and necessity obligates certain sleeping arrangements. M.J. is not related, and should have observed what is naturally known as personal space. Just in, a suitcase of porno was seized from his estate. (??). I would think that's disturbing info, since kids were there. Gossip is idle, often malicious talk. All public discussions pertain to established facts: M.J. in bed with kids by his admitted words, a child accuser, an eye witness (biased?), suitcase of porno, pedophile profile basis, a serious search warrant that police took care to make sure there was enough probable cause. I, for one, would not want to walk in, say, Hitler's shoes to be able to understand his poor upbringing, bad treatment by certain groups and his reasons for the Holocaust, and it did occur.

Faith1978

12/05/2003 10:47:28 AM

I'm tired of hearing about Michael Jackson. I hear him on the news, newspapers, magazines, here and etc etc. Let the court decide if he's guilty or not. Let's move on to a another celebrity (here). I'm sure there are many out there that we could talk about.

MAST512

12/03/2003 04:47:43 AM

bbdh,well said, but you should compare apples with apples. My children crawl into my bed on occasion, after a nightmare, etc., but I would never (NEVER!) invite someone else's child into my bed, nor allow them to come in if they wanted to -- do you see the point now? The fixation on MJ's slumber parties is only a marker in a pattern of behaviors re:children. Are these things normal or aren't they? People should know but maybe they don't. It's important information.

bbdh

12/02/2003 07:27:55 AM

BS"D Besides the obvious proscription against gossip, one should not be so quick to condemn another person unless one has walked in their shoes. I am, quit frankly, sick of hearing about self-righteous anger against sleeping in the same bed as children. That accusation itself convicts the majority of the working poor of either low morality or immodesty. Does anyone really believe MJ was born rich? Why should we expect one to adopt alien morals solely due to a change in economic status? Either the molestation allegations are true or they are lies. This baloney about sharing a bed is not even worthy of comment.

Theo_Logian

12/02/2003 12:09:40 AM

I'm sure glad this Guy was never my clergyman. Hell of a confidentiality there. I avoid gossips.

nilpojsinaj

12/01/2003 11:32:04 PM

I do believe that Michael Jackson is a certified pedophile because he has established himself as a genuine public benefactor, while secretly he can do what he desires by paying off the secular ones with money, and/or making the victims believe that he is untouchable due to his public persona and good works. As he has stated, 'How more can you show love than sharing your bed with them (the children)?' HOW SICK IS THAT!? The truth is in front of everyone, and yet denials come forth. The rabbi is correct; there are rules to observe, and they were established for good reason. Here it is: pedophile - adult with sexual desire for children: an adult who has sexual desire for children or who has committed the crime of sex with a child. Michael Jackson gets to do it publicly and no one complains. Shame on us.

SnoWhyt

11/29/2003 12:52:18 PM

The problem I have with this Rabbi's opinion is that he does not take into consideration that Michael Jackson may have been a nutcase before he became famous. It is easy to blame society for all the ills of an individual. But I know of alot of other famous people who are not child molesters and who don't live in a fantasy of their own making and avoid responsibility for their own actions. Even mega superstars. Plus the one thing that NO ONE seems to connect here is that MJ was RAISED AS A JEHOVAH'S WITNESS and they do not punish child molesters! There are 23, 720 on file right now in Brooklyn and no one seems to care! www.silentlambs.org

ElGabilon

11/26/2003 10:35:11 PM

So as a solution to this problem, we suggest chasity belts for both males and females at all times with combination locks, that only the clergy have the combinations to. If married couples want to "get it on" they would have to contact their clergyman. Of course if we did that, we would have a great number of "miricle babies", and a new kind of Taliban.

ElGabilon

11/26/2003 10:21:20 PM

Yes, we all have to live by rules and one of those rules is "a person is innocent until found guilty. We do not know Michael Jackson. We don't care to ever know him. He is just another body among millions. Never-the-less we will defend his right to a fair and impartial trial and will consider him innocent until such time as a jury of his peers find him guilty. We are all lost in a Cultural Neverland. All religions is a cultural Neverland, a fantasy world where we can find an excuse to ignore the realities of what we are doing to this planet or make up reasons why we are entitled to the land we live on.

SnoWhyt

11/26/2003 09:41:20 PM

just an after thought normajean...the ones who know Michael best are the ones accusing him of molesting them! of course his family will say different. but who else KNOWS Michael but the kids?

SnoWhyt

11/26/2003 09:34:53 PM

No, I have not met MJ personally. However, I lived in So Cal in the 1980's when he was still a JW, and JWs are a tight-knit exclusive cult community and everyone knows everyone elses' business for miles around. ESPECIALLY in SO Cal if you happen to be a superstar worth millions of dollars--and single. I heard rumors, knew people who did know him, saw him from a distance, etc. I also was raised a JW, lived it for 34 years, grew up with a schizophrenic father and lived with a bi-polar room-mate for 12 years as an adult. JWs have 4 times the number of mentally ill members than the general population(according to a study done in Australia a few years ago) and I have met my share of them. I am not a doctor. But I am also not a butcher and I can tell the difference between ground beef and tenderloin! www.silentlambs.com

jediknightwannabe

11/26/2003 07:15:56 PM

okay, but until I do spend time with him I'll go by what I see and what he shows the public. And that's a man with a strange plasticized face, who lies through his teeth, whose arrogant beyond decency, and his closest peers are barely a quarter his age. And that secret bedroom they found behind in his closet ain't helping his case any.

normajean2

11/26/2003 08:55:51 AM

What concerns me is all you lay people, even professionals who have never sat one moment with Michael, who think you can diagnoss Michael by just looking at him. You can say he dresses weird, looks weird and perhaps acts weird, but until you actually spend time with the guy, I don't see how you think you can make judgements about who he actually is.

mistyweather

11/26/2003 08:03:22 AM

I'm afraid that Michael Jackson suffers from Narcissism a very disturbing mental disorder. It would fit in with what the Rabbi was saying about Michael not being willing to change his behavior. Narcissism is brought on by severe childhood frustration and abuse. It holds the persons original core personality hostage and cemented behind a thick protective wall.A wall that was needed to protect him as a child. What we see now is just a cartoon caracter invented and fed by all of those around him who have done him a grave harm by allowing him to distroy himself both physically and now socially. This is surely a very dangerous situation for all involved including his own children. His children, who have no voice of their own, need protection now from his mental illness. I'm sure there is no one in this mortal world that he feels he has to answer to. Having said he has a mental illness does not in any way excuse him from wrongful behavior and he needs to be held resposible for his actions.

bohem

11/25/2003 01:32:42 PM

Whether these cliams turn out to be true or false..even if they turn out to be false..I think Michael's siblings and his mother are SO affraid of hurting his feelings..that they don't even sugest that maybe he should change the ways he looks and acts. One of his brothers need to take him aside and say, "Michael you need to start dressing and looking like a man..because the way you wear lip stick and thick eye liner and all people think you wish to look like Diana Ross..and while Diana is beautiful woman..they key word here, Micael, is 'WOMAN.' Perhaps the media is unkind to you but when you dress and look so womanly, can you blaim them for questioning you? If none of the Jackson family members address all of this with him then they are actually doing more harm by making him think he's behavior is normal..and therefore misleading him. If they really love him they need to get staright and direct and firm.

SnoWhyt

11/25/2003 12:51:45 AM

wanna know about Jehovah's Witnesses and child molestation? www.silentlambs.org I know because I was one. 23,720 child molestors on file with Watchtower Bible and Tract Society who are protected by this religious cult! Michael Jackson was raised as a Jehovah's Witness---is this a surprise? not for a former Silent Lamb!

SnoWhyt

11/25/2003 12:51:09 AM

That is star-struck and money hungry. They used MJ before they accused him of molesting their kid! They would have gotten tons more out of it if they didn't make him an enemy! He was not their friend! He was their benefactor! bite the hand that feeds you--makes no sense unless he did molest the kid. Well I know I got kinda passionate about this but I really cant stand MJ and I never have--even when he was a JW. Reminds me too much of other schizo's I have known. And if he insists he is not crazy then he should be dealt with the same way as other people. If he is not crazy then he seriously needs to grow the F up! I wish I could slap him

SnoWhyt

11/25/2003 12:50:57 AM

The only person who worships MJ is MJ. Yes I know teeny boppers go crazy for him at concerts and people act like fools over him. But they are no where near the majority. I think blaming society for MJs insanity is way off the mark. He was not so famous until he was an adult. He was famous, yes, but not more so than other rock stars. He got mega famous with the 1980's when he split off from his brothers. It was around the same time he got really weird too. Thats how schizophrenia works. It happens in the early mid 20's around college age mostly. I believe part of his thirst for fame came from the schizophrenia, he just happened to be talented enough to get it. I don't think he was famous before he was crazy. I believe he was crazy before he was famous. Now what CAN be blamed on 'society' is the stupid parents' allowing their kids to spend time with him alone!

SnoWhyt

11/25/2003 12:50:10 AM

I lived in CA when MJ was still a JW. I know he went in service dressed in fat suits and disguises and I know he drew crowds at assemblies and stuff. He liked it. He is a weirdo and he has always been a weirdo. I took a graphology course in 1985 to use at work and I was given samples of famous people's handwriting to analyze without knowing who they were. The whole class was given the same ones. 95% of the class named one example as a child molester and it turned out to be MJ's handwriting!

SnoWhyt

11/25/2003 12:49:23 AM

The problem I have with this Rabbi's opinion is that he does not take into consideration that Michael Jackson may have been a nutcase before he became famous. It is easy to blame society for all the ills of an individual. But I know of alot of other famous people who are not child molesters and who don't live in a fantasy of their own making and avoid responsibility for their own actions. Even mega superstars. Plus the one thing that NO ONE seems to connect here is that MJ was RAISED AS A JEHOVAH'S WITNESS and they do not punish child molesters! There are 23, 720 on file right now in Brooklyn and no one seems to care! www.silentlambs.org

PastorMeny

11/24/2003 11:28:03 PM

I read with interests the Rabbi's summarization of MJ and the thoughts shared by many concerning his fate. Many believers and nonbelievers have already found MJ guilty. With the hype and bad PR and of course the spin, Jackson finds himself confronted with the American Justice System. This country still is messed up by the OJ Simpson trauma which still plaques us today. Some will understand others the words will just go over like a 747. The conclusion of the Rabbi bothers me because it is apparent he is not culturally relevant, i.e., like the Psychologist in CA whose ready to take Michael's children away, accompanied by Gloria A. What we see here is the System given birth in institutional racism. What Mr. Jackson is about to discover is his blackness, not gray, nor white but blackness! He is now about to take a journey on the darkside, and his image of the 1980s - 1990s is going to be for him what Blacks have experienced for over 200 years and as Don King States Only in America!

MadeleineBelievesIn

11/24/2003 11:16:48 PM

I don't see how the public's general obsession with celebrities has anything to do with Michael's arrest, or even his mental state. Michael has obviously lost touch with reality (he believes his children to be "presents" from the mothers, he refuses to admit that he's had plastic surgery, and he tried to say that his record company was rascist!), and there is now way to convince anyone that it is society's fault. Furthermore, this is not some publicity stunt like his kiss with Lisa Marie, this is his second arrest for child molestation, and there is no way that you can tie it to his fame. The man is out of his mind, no matter how you try to remove the blame.

tm47

11/24/2003 06:27:17 PM

Everyone is responsible for their own behavior and blaming society for 'celebrity worship' as Rabbi Boteach suggests, is just another cope out for MJ to say he's not responsible. Child abusers, and suspected ones all blame their abusers for their behavior, which makes that irresponsible. Help is available for those who seek it, and it's easy to blame others rather than look in the mirror, take action for your own life, by adjusting your own desturctive behavior.

susangb

11/24/2003 05:17:41 PM

I am sorry, but I find that seeing Rabbi Shmuley Boteach's face on television as an 'expert' witness on Michael Jackson rather suspect. What kind of friend would do that - past or present? It seems I cannot turn a channel or read an article without hearing his name or seeing his face and him making some decree's about Michael. Friends like him are exactly the reason why he chooses the company of children. If Michael Jackson is predator, so is Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.

truf825

11/24/2003 12:57:45 PM

Hi, I'm new to this, but after reading most of the posting I had to respond. -Teejai,I would hope that if anyone was to abuse my child no matter what his/her race was that the law would deal with them effectively. Mr. Jackson fits the profile of a pedophile. His actions are not of a normal thinking adult. If there is enough hard evidence to seek a trail against Mr. Jackson, it wouldn't be because he is black. It would be because of his actions that of a pedophile. I also do not hold Mr. Jackson 100% at fault, the parents of these children, probably grew up as idol worshippers of Mr. Jackson and continue to get enthralled by him and his image. These parents are as much at fault as Mr. Jackson. I do not believe the court should award monies to parents who purposely place their children in harms way.

WayneGilbert

11/24/2003 12:26:07 PM

Michael Jackson: his descent into madness is sad, especially when one considers that his entourage must have been aware of it yet no one could stop it. However, I am also troubled by such statements (now coming out) as that made by Rabbi Boteach, i.e "I tried to tell him but he didn't do what I told him." When those statements are made by those who were close to Michael Jackson such as rabbis and lawyers they border on breaches of confidence and are at the very best nothing but self-serving and self-righteous trumpeting.

qtp3

11/24/2003 10:08:16 AM

Its facinating to me that Michael Jackson Problems did not become public until 1993 after he bought the Masters to the Beatles music. This seems like an exploitation of his strange charachter in order to force him to sell that much coveted and prosperous beatles music. he bought it before 1993 and began his problems and if he's a pedafile then why are parents allowing their children to sleep in his bed? its all like a sick soap opera, with money as the primary interest..

sarah_chanah

11/24/2003 07:10:03 AM

In respectful disagreement with Arelle, I do not "hope that [Jackson] can clear his name." I have been very concerned about the clearly distorted way he treats his own children -- veiling them, giving two of them the same name, leading a bizarre, hermetic life -- and am relieved to know that he will be called on his behavior. Perhaps the children he paid two women to bear will have a chance at a happy life. His own upbringing was tragic, I'm absolutely sure, but, thank G-d the cycle of destruction has a chance to end here.

MAST512

11/24/2003 05:32:15 AM

Um, Perubird? You say you're "Jewish, African, and Amazon Aborigine." You say your father "was a Jewish and African (non-white) Rabbi." You also say that your parents were murdered for their Christian beliefs. Please, Jewish folks, chime in here and correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't believe you can be Jewish unless your mother was an observant Jew. I think there's a rabbinical law against it, so that's one ethnicity you really can't claim. As for the rest of your story...well, let's say it sounds fascinating. Like, screenplay-worthy.

robeezee

11/23/2003 11:44:38 PM

I think the Rabbi's touting of family and spiritual values as essential elements of a balanced life is a bunch of bunk. While I believe that MJ's activities are self-destructive (e.g. cosmetic surgery to the point of disfigurement), there are many ways for stars or other famous people to stay tuned in to reality long enough to stay out of jail, and they needn't involve spirituality of any kind. In any interview I've seen of MJ, the one characteristic of note is that he comes across as not particularly bright or insightful. After settling one suit with another boy who "took advantage of him because he was famous", I don't think it takes a mental giant to realize that anyone with less financial means and the desire to do so could victimize him in exactly the same manner. And so he has placed himself in exactly the same position. I don't think its necessarily spirituality that MJ lacks, but common sense would also go a long way toward his future happiness.

Arelle

11/23/2003 06:19:15 AM

The rabbi hit the nail on the head.Of course Michael Jackson should be considered innocent until proven guilty, nevertheless, he used terrible judgement in every facet of his professional life. He smothered his great talent by his antics and his excesses. I am saddened that a man of so much talent and wealth pandered to the bizarre and allowed his sycophants to rule and ultimately ruin his life. They should have made it clear to him that sleeping with boys is unwise, unhealthy, and in dreadful taste both morally and in every other way. (And the parents of these boys are equally to blame. What in the world were they thinking when they allowed their children to be placed in such an untenable position)I hope for his sake that he can clear his name. This is not an issue of color or religion, this is an issue of serving as a decent example and living a moral life.

Wellthought

11/23/2003 05:10:26 AM

There are some surprisingly well-balanced and thought out posts here. Good to read them. One thing that hasn't been thought of, is this: Jackson has said that taking a child into your bed is the most loving thing you can do for him. Knowing as we do his own childhood's shortcomings, it doesn't take much to figure out that he may be trying to do for other kids what he wishes his own parents had done for him.

Wellthought

11/23/2003 05:10:11 AM

Imagine growing up in the stresses and strains of celebrity as a child, and not being able to go to your parents about being scared or worried. I know that when I'm stressed, I sometimes have bad dreams; I'm sure this is common to all of us. I'm sure Michael knew this feeling as a child, and may still know it. I don't think he has ever felt safe. No doubt he wishes he had been able to go to his parents at night when he woke up from a nightmare. This seems to me the most reasonable explanation of his statements and behavior on this issue. Pedophiles don't generally publicise things like this; instead, they hide what they do, even threaten the child if he tells. Should Michael get past this? Yes. It is eccentric behavior, and it opens him up to charges like the one he is now facing.

Wellthought

11/23/2003 05:09:42 AM

But I really don't believe these charges. For one thing, we are seeing entirely too many charges leveled against too many people these days. Is everyone a freak or evil? No, but a sick or greedy mentality will see it that way. And those who feel they are owed something by those who have more than they do, will also try to get whatever they can from them. That includes those in law enforcement, for whom these big busts can mean promotion and pay raises. Cops have quotas, and one officer I know personally was actually honest enough to admit this to me, although most will deny it. Also, when you look at the fact that these people had tried to get money from Jackson unsuccessfully, the whole scenario takes on a different slant.

Wellthought

11/23/2003 05:09:01 AM

Michael Jackson is an obviously hurting person, and so an easy target for the sociopathic in our society. I don't believe the charges against Michael, but I do believe that, like all of us, he needs the love of Christ to heal the wounds he carries. When a society finds it easier to wound people than to bind them up, this society needs to look at itself and admit that it is sick and in need of healing. When it sees every person as a potential pervert or enemy, sees no one as possessing or being capable of possessing any real innocence, it is time to admit its own guilt and need of mental and emotional redemption. I recall some time ago, in a college class I taught, hearing a young woman say, "I didn't think anyone was innocent anymore." This brought me to a place of sorrow for that young woman, and for a nation that can allow its children to grow up believing in no one and seeing evil in even the most innocent acts. We owe ourselves and our children better than that.

icthys

11/23/2003 02:13:42 AM

perubird, Thank you for sharing your account as well as your wittness. If it was by our own power alone none of us would be able to forgive. Thank God He gives us the ability and the heart to do so by grace, through faith in Jesus.

manthing

11/23/2003 12:35:04 AM

Teejai, your race baiting is just like most everyone else's; enthusiastic, but unfounded. The reason for any discrepancies between the treatment of M.J. and minions of the Catholic Church is due to the fact that MJ is a solitary individual, while the Catholic Church is a global cult with virtually unlimited funds and a global constituency that reaches in to every political and law enforcement jurisdiction imaginable. Nice try, keep it up, eventually people like yourself will discredit the integrity of your entire community, and nothing will ever be accomplished to advance civil rights.

rainbows64nz

11/22/2003 11:52:24 PM

perubird, thanks for sharing your torturous experiences. I also had an abusive childhood and I don't think we need to compare traumas. I have no doubt that teejai has reason for his views also. Racism does exist, in most if not all cultures, and some races have had it especially tough. That's where I believe our spirituality comes in. Our willingness to overcome our suffering is how we can make this a better world. The alternative is to fight back and create more of the same. I admire your ability to forgive all that has happened to you. Not everyone finds it as easy.

Goyboy

11/22/2003 09:10:28 PM

perubird, None of us on Beliefnet have the power to forgive Michael Jackson. Only the person who is wronged can do the forgiving. [By the way, thank you for telling us what happened in Peru. My wife is a native of Peru.]

perubird

11/22/2003 07:13:59 PM

Teejai, what's your excuse again, that racial thing, and what's Michael Jackson's excuse? Compared to the Bible, to Y'Shua, and to my life, none! The only one who ever had any excuse, was Y'Shua, and He never complained about life being unfair. Talk about "disadvantage!" He was Jewish, an oppressed minority, poor, misunderstood, not listened to, naked on the cross, the ultimate humiliation for a Jewish man (he wore no loincloth on the cross, Romans ALWAYS stripped their prisoners naked before nailing them to a cross), innocent before a jury that was determined to break the laws of the Torah to pronounce Him guilty, He was wronged, oppressed, tortured, and murdered, YET He didn't complain and whine! You might say "well, that's because He was G-d!" But He suffered as we would have, if any of us were put on a cross, He didn't come down and save Himself -- He could have! He suffered fully as Man! He'll have you beat, Teejai, any day!!

perubird

11/22/2003 07:13:25 PM

Teejai, The couple who bought me belonged to Satanists (Satanists for many, perhaps hundreds of generations), I grew up with hell, here on earth. They sexually abused me, also physically, mentally, emotionally and verbally, programmed me too. I forgive them, because there's still hope for them, also because if I don't, G-d won't forgive me. Yet, I love G-d, I love Y'Shua, and I chose to do what's right, as I have no excuse. By the way, these people lightened my skin so it looks white, changed my face so it looks white racially, & gave me something so I ended up being tall. All of this, except for the tallness, which they did later at six years old, the rest of it done when I was two.

perubird

11/22/2003 07:12:27 PM

This is also for Teejai: My parents who loved me, were shot in front of me in Peru, I was two, in the 1960's, by Peruvian Communists and U.S. soldiers. Some Vietnam vets never went to Vietnam, instead sent to South America to make sure Communists didn't gang up together against America. What a joke! They didn't have to bother -- all the dictators hated & refused cooperatation with each other! My parents were shot for loving Y'Shua (Jesus), I was kidnapped and sold to a couple in America for $500 to $1000, the same done to some of my brothers and sisters, some sold and some adopted, none of us raised knowing who we were: my father was a Jewish and African (non-white) Rabbi, and my Aborigine mother the daughter of her tribe's king.

perubird

11/22/2003 07:08:50 PM

I think we should forgive Michael Jackson, If he's guilty, it'll come out in this life or the next. If he's innocent, it'll be the same thing. Teejai: I am Jewish, African, and Amazon Aborigine. You can't do the race thing here. Didn't you see that the priest, convicted of molesting children, in handcuffs, the one who was later murdered? I did, on TV. We're all equal before G-d, so when you make that complaint before Him, it won't wash. Jesus was Jewish, but all nations, ethnic & people groups, races, and languages are all on His Face. There's no excuse any one human being can have over another, we have all sinned and ALL have fallen short of G-d's glory, including you. I like what the Rabbi said, it is right on target, also CKnuck. The standard of the Bible has been thrown out, so no one can say to someone else, "That's wrong!" At least Michael Jackson had his parents, whether they truly loved him, we don't know. But he makes his own choices and should be held accountable for them. He has no excuse.

bignoise99

11/22/2003 07:07:16 PM

Would any of these charges been made against Michael Jackson if not for his celebrity status and his ability to pay large compensation claims? With all the bad publicity he has had in previous years why would any parent allow their child to stay at his home without either Mum or Dad present. I hope that justice will prevail, but in the meantime I think thaat Michael Jacksons treatment by authorities is questionable.

ktnka

11/22/2003 06:53:17 PM

For a very long time I thought that someone like Michael Jackson would definitely benifit from having an honest caring person give him advice. Because of his money and power I often pictured him surrounded by persons who approve of his every whim. And because he has been famous for so long and never had real parenting or normal childhood experiences even though I want to believe he is innocent something about this crime seems befitting of him unfortunately. I was pleased to know that someone like the Rabbi tried to be the voice of reason but I was very disappointed to see his reaction; which would also be typical of someone in the mindset of a celebrity. It's complicated; he is eccentric enough to share his bed with kids and not find harm in it - if this was the case he probably thought of himself as a child having a sleep over. But on the other hand someone of his age and his obvious intelligence should know better. I hope the truth comes out.

rainbows64nz

11/22/2003 06:43:59 PM

Hello teejai! :O) I am a white woman so I hope you don't mind my responding to your message! I don't believe that the accusations against MJ are racially motivated at all. Maybe you meant the subsequent treatment of him? I don't agree with that either. I think that is perceptual, since there are others of us who feel he has been treated lightly because of who he is. Where I will agree that racism may be an issue, is in Michael Jackson's childhood, where he may have learned to hate being black. That I would accept and it is a tragedy. Also, the system that will deal with him may have its racial flaws also. Oh, by-the-way, capitals are very hard to read. Ouch! :O)

rainbows64nz

11/22/2003 06:31:58 PM

hlharper01 asked, "What are the hallmarks of a paedophile?" I will try to explain some of them. A paedophile is someone who compulsively abuses children. They are often unable to "grow up" emotionally and relate better to children than adults. Like addicts of any kind, paedophiles are cunning and will go to great lengths to achieve their "need". One very common way that paedophiles gain access to children is by gaining the trust of the parents. The paedophile may choose disadvantaged children and shower gifts, attention and "affection" on them. If the perpetrator has money and/or power then that is a bonus. In my personal opinion, I do believe that on some level, these people believe they are "innocent" and are doing nothing wrong. They know it is wrong on another level, hence the manipulation of the child/children to keep the activity secret. Hope that answers the question a little. I'm sure there is plenty of information online that would be more comprehensive than what I have written here.

icthys

11/22/2003 06:12:40 PM

Whether or not Jackson is or is not guilty, will hopefully be discovered. Celeberty or not, he and every other American is accountable for their actions. It would be rather helpful if the media would cease treating celeberties as untouchables. (Not to mention their habit of constantly speculating and reporting what they want their listeners to believe.) Regardless, Jackson willingly and unwisely placed himself within situations which would raise supicions and speculation from the start. Not to mention temptation. Much like unmarried couples like to "play house" and live together, then innocently claim "nothing is happening.

cknuck

11/22/2003 02:49:52 PM

FYI teejai my earlier post and I speak for this blackman and friends I've spoken to about this subject. "I think the good Rabbi is right on target with this one and makes perfect sense. We show our worship when we are willing to pay anything to have a piece of the celeb. We've turned away from of families and homes and look to the media for our lives. Our worship is hours in front of the tube, and millions on cd's and concerts. And instead of trying to be like God would have us be we want to be famous." "Just look at what lenghts Britiney Spears will go to get famous. I think that spit sharing with Madona is just what Britiney thinks the public want her to do and to be, "more freaky." And so it begins for Britiney, how far out can I get?"

she4book

11/22/2003 02:33:54 PM

Michael is a musical genius. But still, I have a problem with the fact that most people accommendate guests by putting them in another room. Michael has plenty of rooms and plenty of means to protect himself. And I believe his mother saw to it that he had some moral training. It was up to him once he became an adult to continue his moral training and to learn from his mistatkes. And it's also the responsibility of parents to TRY to protect their young. Along with all the problems I see here money is probably another one of them. The child was considered the least. I love Disney Land and have NOT heard anything negative about it. But if my child(ren) goes, so am I. Thus.........

teejai

11/22/2003 02:33:40 PM

cknuck, i don't think that you speak for the blackman, and to answr you question about where i've been for the last 10 to 15 years, i've been watch and listening to the media make a big deal about everything this man does, if he goes to the mall the media is there, if he goes to the zoo the media is there. now tell me who needs help the people that follow him and report his evey move or micheal who is just trying to live his life? remember what the media did to princess di? is this micheal's futer?

cknuck

11/22/2003 02:27:36 PM

teejai where have you been the last 10 or 15 years? Michael Jackson is not being treated this way because he is a black man (coming from a black man's view) and he hasn't played by the black man's rule for a long time. Most black folk consider him white and I think he does too. Sorry, put your race card back in your deck.

teejai

11/22/2003 02:14:55 PM

HELLO EVERYONE IT'S ME AGAIN..I'M SORRY BUT I'M GOING TO HAVE TO PLAY THE RACE CARD HERE..IF YOU THINK ABOUT THE THE MEMBERS OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH THAT HAD HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE COME FORWARD AND SAID THAT THEY WERE MOLESTED BY THE FATHER OF THE CHURCH, NOT ONCE DID YOU SEE THEM ON TV IN HANDCUFFS. AS A MATTER OF FACT PEOPLE WERE DEFENDING THEM AND NO ONE HAS SAID ANYTHING ABOUT THE CATHLOIC CHURCH PAYING OFF FAMILIES..I THINK MICHAEL JACKSON IS BEING TREATED THE WAY IS BECAUSE HE IS A BLACK MAN THAT DOESN'T PLAY BY THE WHITE MAN'S RULES..THINK ABOUT THIS, HOW MANY OF THE PRIEST OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HAS GONE TO JAIL, HOW MANY HAVE BEEN PUT IN OTHER POSITION WITHIN THE CHURCH AND STILL MOLEST KID..HAS ANY OF THEM BEEN BLACK? ASK YOURSELF WHY AREN'T THEY BEING TREAT LIKE MICHAEL JACKSON.. WHY HASN'T THE MEDIA MADE THEM GUILTY..HUMMMM IS IT BECAUSE THEY ARE WHITE...WWJD?

teejai

11/22/2003 01:58:09 PM

MICHAEL JACKSON IS A PERSON, HE'S NOT GOD. I DO NOT THINK MICHEAL HAS EVER DONE ANYTHING TO HARM A CHILD. I THINK MICHAEL LOVES ALL CHILDREN. I THINK HIS ACTIONS ARE VERY PURE AND BECAUSE HE IS "MICHAEL JACKSON" THE MEDIA BLOWS UP EVERYTHING HE DOES. MY GOD, GIVE THIS MAN A BREAK AND LET HIM LIVE HIS LIFE. PEOLPE HAVE ALREADY FOUND HIM GILTY AND HE HASN'T BEEN CHARGE OF ANYTHING YET. I PRAY THAT GOD HAS MERCY ON EVERYONE AND LET HIS WORK BE DONE AND THE TRUTH BE TOLD. I PRAY FOR EVERYONE THAT FEELS THAT THIS MAN KIDS ARE TAKEN FROM HIM. HE IS A MAN THAT GOD MADE AND WHO ARE WE TO JUDGE HIM. I'M SURE ALL THE PARENTS THAT HAVE LEFT THERE KIDS WITH MICHAEL JACKSON TRUSTED HIM WHEN THEY LEFT THEM IN HIS CARE. I ASKING ALL THAT READS THIS TO PRAY FOR MICHAEL, I ASKED THAT YOU PRAY FOR THE MEDIA AND PRAY FOR HIS FAMILY, PRAY FOR THE JUDGE, PRAY FOR THE ATTORNIES, PLEASE FOR EVERYONE THE LITTLE BOY AND HIS FAMILY. WE CAN NOT JUDGE THIS MAN IF WE DON'T WNT TO BE JUDGED..ASK YOURSELF WWJD? FOLLOW HIS LEAD!!GOD BLESS

cknuck

11/22/2003 11:34:02 AM

barblee I really like your statement of belief on your bio. But I disagree with not taking (without judging) a real good look at what goes on in this kind of case. So even if we can, or cannot avoid judging Micheal we can prevent producing another Michael. Sadly no matter how talented he is, if the charges are true, I could have gone without any of his music.

barblee

11/22/2003 09:55:12 AM

Rabbi Boteach's article is right on target. I heard a psychiatrist last night remark that if Michael Jackson is a pedophile then he is operating out of a compulsion and couldn't stop if he wanted to. All the advice in the world couldn't help him and his problem will play out in his life. Very sad commentary. I pray for all concerned that these charges are not true. As to Michael Jackson's personna; it is different but then we haven't walked in his shoes so we shouldn't judge. He is a very talented man. His music and dancing are incomparable.

hlharper01

11/22/2003 08:51:17 AM

I think someone was right when they said Michael was a teenager stuck inside an adult's body. I don't think Michael matured passed age 13 or 14. As far as having a rough childhood, sometimes children growing up in the spotlight do have rough childhoods. In an interview, Jermaine Jackson stated that they had a 'wonderful childhood.' If Micheal is innocent, then great, but he needs to keep children out of his bed. I was wondering what 'skin condition' he had, as someone mentioned. I thought he bleached his skin? Also, what are the 'hallmarks' of a pedophile?

cknuck

11/22/2003 07:44:29 AM

Just look at what lenghts Britiney Spears will go to get famous. I think that spit sharing with Madona is just what Britiney thinks the public want her to do and to be, "more freaky." And so it begins for Britiney, how far out can I get?

cknuck

11/22/2003 07:30:36 AM

I think the good Rabbi is right on target with this one and makes perfect sense. We show our worship when we are willing to pay anything to have a piece of the celeb. We've turned away from of families and homes and look to the media for our lives. Our worship is hours in front of the tube, and millions on cd's and concerts. And instead of trying to be like God would have us be we want to be famous.

rainbows64nz

11/22/2003 06:52:16 AM

I understand that Michael Jackson has not yet been tried, therefore I will bear that in mind. Unfortunately Michael Jackson has all the 'hallmarks' of a paedophile. If this is happening, then it needs to stop! The first family should never have been allowed to be paid off, since this has been fuel for Jackson's sympathisers. This time there will be no financial compensation and, hopefully, justice will prevail. Michael was brave enough to talk about the physical violence he endured. His sister La Toyah shed some light on an even more sinister aspect of family life, some years back. I really believe this is one of many wakeup calls when it comes to the reality of family violence and its possible consequences. Sadly, like many others, it will probably be wasted on the wider population. As usual, the children concerned do not receive the same public care and concern as the one who may well have caused abhorrent trauma in their lives.

KIND6004

11/21/2003 09:40:24 PM

Hopefully, Micheal moves swiftly to give someone in his family, guardianship or legal custody of his children while it is still in his control. It appears many want to have his children removed from his control, if state abuse workers decide he will not like their decision regarding the placement of his children.

KIND6004

11/21/2003 09:36:59 PM

I am Glad that someone did advise Michael about the poor judgement in having a man have children sleeping in his bed. Its then not going to seem as disasterous, if he has to reap the stupidity he has displayed. I had wondered if his family, had tried to counsel him in this regard. Michael is a great musician, and his talents are good. But his morality is a major problem. He needed Godly counsel in his life, and Its scary that he did not heed the Rabbi's suggestions. Most child abusers do not fare well in prison. It is said there is honor even among thieves they do not bode well with child molesters or rapists. Its common knowledge in the criminal justice system which makes it hard for some to be prosecuted. I hope that Micheal is innocent. I hope that if he is he is found innocent.

etoro

11/21/2003 05:25:24 PM

Unforunately, what the good Rabbi fails to realize is its not only the celebrity's audience that has transfered their superstitious beliefs in a greater being onto their "larger than life" celebrities. Celebrities themselves, having been reared in the same superstitions find themselves overwhelmed by the power of the attention and also turn to superstitioun and start inventing ideas believing that "God" has "annointed" them with a special "gift" that's to be used to inspire / encourage the masses to do good. Celebrities believe that they are special and don't bother to look inside themselves, challenge their flaws. If we look at the Rabbi's statement, the Rabbi himself is expressing a false idealism, the view that the past is always better, more pure, than the present state of affairs. The world has never been pure and mankind has always worshipped celebrities. So in the end, the Rabbi's entire premise is flawed. Erroneous belief systems lie at the heart of the problem.

Metanoia45

11/21/2003 04:20:43 PM

"But superstars live in a world not of their own creation, but of our creation. Our worship of celebrities has gone from a pastime to a devotion, from a form of recreation to a form of veneration, from entertainment to religion." Of course! It's OUR fault that Michael Jackson is one messed-up puppy! (Sarcasm, of course.) I, for one, do NOT worship celebrities.

redaunt

11/21/2003 03:59:52 PM

Abiss... that was too funny! He probably will, as most institutions of corrections have to keep the "chi-mo's" (pedophiles, to be proper) out of general population--for their own safety. The saddest thing is: Who keeps innocent children out of the hands of monsters? I can spout about MJ and what I think he is (see my first paragraph), and I can question the problem of "celebrity and living in your own world", but I have to ask: WHAT KIND OF PARENT LETS THEIR CHILD SPEND THE NIGHT WITH A GROWN MAN FOR THE HELL OF IT? I don't care if he's rich, famous or what! IF there is a victim of sexual assault at the hands of MJ, then what kind of accountablility do we ask of the PARENTS OF THE VICTIM? How sad it is that not only this childs parents, but parents everywhere allow their children to be placed in the hands of predators. THINK PEOPLE!

shaner

11/21/2003 03:59:50 PM

kelticmaiden, the only problem I have with your post is you labelling Jackson as an important American Icon, if he's considered as such by some people, it's as the good Rabbi says, Society should not be elevating Entertainers, Athletes, etc., as more than mere humans.

Abiss

11/21/2003 03:53:06 PM

He certainly knows the ins and outs of child rearing

Abiss

11/21/2003 03:51:56 PM

I think Michael Jackson will hold his own in prison

kelticmaiden

11/21/2003 01:01:59 PM

Thanks Tigress28, I figured i'd get really negative feedback on my opinion. I probably will..lol

Tigress28

11/21/2003 12:28:10 PM

I actually have to agree with you, kelticmaiden. Micheal Jackson does need help. Rabbi Boteach did try to advise Micheal, and it is Micheal's own fault that he did not heed the Rabbi's advice.

kelticmaiden

11/21/2003 12:24:21 PM

I think that the Rabbi had the best intentions with Michael. I think that he was doing what no one else has done. He listened to him. He tried to teach him the importance of moral issues of being alone with children. And basically not just children persay, little boys. I wonder if Michael is really so messed up that he would repeat the scandal of 10 yrs ago. Who really knows. With everyone being so sue happy, ask yourself, don't ya think that maybe it's some poor family trying to make another quick million. Could be. Michael has set himself up for this. The interview earlier this year did him in. It was dishearting to hear one of Americas greatest icons tell the world that sleeping with these boys is ok, because it's love. What Michael needs is help. I mean in the psychological way. There is no doubt that he is mentally unstable, but I'm not so sure that he is a molester.

rbethell

11/21/2003 12:13:18 PM

It is not enough for a Rabbi to simply pray about bad things - they must be called as they are. If the prophet had done nothing but "pray" for Nineveh in the Jonah parable, Nineveh would have been ashes. Idolatry has been, continues to be, and will always be a problem. If a rabbi is to be shouted down for take a stand against it, why bother ordaining any?

WillSea

11/21/2003 11:56:31 AM

bbittner, herr rabbi is all about himself being such a grand influence on poor michael, but his influence was yanked away and "undermined by managers and apparatchiks" This isn't about Michael as much as it is about the rabbi. If he was such a friend, we would have no more in this article than a prayer.

Daveykins_FoxFire

11/21/2003 11:46:12 AM

I actually feel pity for MJ. We're talking about a person who had an actual childhood that would make the Osbournes look like the Cleavers. (And not to mention some of our own families as well) And add the part about his skin condition and all that, and you have a sorrowfull case of a grown up who's stuck in his early teens inside. He was never allowed to grow up, and now he's going to need to lower himself to an OJ-style defence to defend himself from being mass-bullied because of it. I do hope that the court takes pity on MJ.

akbusch

11/21/2003 11:44:50 AM

For the most part, I agree with Rabbi. I also think that our deification of celebrities and making allowances for the stupid behavior of the rich and famous, and not holding them accountable for that behavior, is a symptom of a deeper disease in our culture. We live in an "it's-not-my-fault" culture. Basically, people are not held accountable for their behavior or the consequences thereof.

bbittner

11/21/2003 11:43:55 AM

willsea: Where did the Rabbi promote hisself as "adviser to the starts?" he Rabbi isn't name dropping. He's stating a fact. Yes, he knew Michael. We don't know if he approached Michael, or Michael approached him. The point is they talked. They are both human. They have just a right to talk to each other as anybody does. And that doesn't make the Rabbi an idolator.

WillSea

11/21/2003 11:29:14 AM

"When I was close to Michael between 1999 and 2001, I tried to convey to him" " I introduced him to..." "my influence with Michael was waning" Good G_d! it sure looks like the name-droppin' rabbi is among the idolators who make themselves important by promoting himself as some "adviser to the stars." Oh, would that Michael had listened to YOU! Then his life woulda been a glory to...well to YOU, Rabbi, not to any Deity, but you! Rabbi, you're part of the PROBLEM! Arrogance, pure and simple. Cloaked in some "religious ideals" but arrogance nonetheless. Shame!

normajean2

11/21/2003 11:16:52 AM

First off, I'd like to say that the protection of my child would come before anything. So I have to agree to an extent with brigletts. But I would also pose this question to the DA, what are you going to do about the father of the boy he was accused of molesting 10 years ago? Does he not bear some burden if indeed these charges prove to be true?

greling

11/21/2003 10:20:52 AM

Personally, no offense to Michael, but I think he might have did it. He addresses children in a manner that is typical of pedophiles. Pedophiles that sexually abuse boys tend to address them as 'boy to boy' and pedophiles who sexually abuse girls tend to address them as 'man to woman'. In the inteviews and TV specials that I've seen, Michael seems to exhibit these personality traits, and if we consider the unusual amount of affection he displays for other people's children and the fact that he kisses them and lets them sleep in the same bed (which is very inappropriate considering their age), there's a chance that Michael's got something strange going on.

manthing

11/21/2003 09:56:54 AM

Bbittner, I like your post, I feel the same way about these celebrity athletes as well. Priorities are certainly askew. I often look at the crowded stadiums and think "what if they all went out and picked up trash by the river", or something like that.

cportwat

11/21/2003 09:55:29 AM

Wow. What a powerful, thought provoking, honest way to put into words this Michael Jackson Headline Story that has consumed our thoughts and heart for the past couple of days. Thank You Rabbi for your insight into this sad madness...

manthing

11/21/2003 09:54:23 AM

Well, YadaYada, there's a difference in earning a good name by your works as opposed to trying to ride on the coattails of others. I like your name, by the way. It's not a fairytale where I live. Though I'll admit the masses are fickle, and years of good work and integrity can be wiped out by mere moments of suspicion...

brigletts

11/21/2003 09:24:36 AM

My question is. If as a parent you knew that 10 years ago Michael was accused of molestation, why would you let your child stay at his home? You can't tell me that you didn't know of the accusations. The entire world knew because stuff like this is broadcast across the earth. If I knew that someone was accused of molestation and pedophilia you can best bet you would never be alone with my child for one minute. So what in the world were the parents thinking? It was never absolutely proven that he committed the molestation in the last case but regardless the fact that you were accused would make me cautious. You would never be alone with my child period. The parents are partly responsible for this whole mess. As a parent if I allow my child to be alone with someone that I know has been accused of such atrocities I should be brought up on charges.

bbittner

11/21/2003 08:59:55 AM

Rabbi says: "Our worship of celebrities has gone from a pastime to a devotion, from a form of recreation to a form of veneration, from entertainment to religion." I totally agree. I caught a bit of a documentary on Britney Spears, and showed the massive amount of manpower, time, energy, preparation and management put into a surprise appearance of hers at dance club. And I thought, if people would only put that kind of focus on worshiping G-d or serving their fellow human being, what a world we would have. Corporate greed has done much harm;, but one big thing that is overlooked is just how much of humankind's creative energies have been diverted to it's cause. And who benefitted from such an appearance. Hundres pulled together to make it happen, but the only people getting rich from it are Britney and soem record executives. And the audience? They will continue to worship Britney, instead of G-d, and will buy her album and listen to it, instead of listening to the words of G-d.

patedwards

11/21/2003 08:59:05 AM

the thing that bothers me most about this is my own voyeurism at this. I have no idea what happens with Michael Jackson and those around him, but I, like many others, see the headlines and read or watch. am I so different from someone who buys People magazine or stands outside a hotel waving, "we love you, Michael!" placards? is it just a matter of degree?

lisamaria68

11/21/2003 08:33:10 AM

I personally feel as if he has issues with himself that he attempts to deal with, by not dealing with it. If he wants to help Children so much why don't he start with messed up adults, who messes up kids. Why exclusively go to a child's aid, and not set up things to help parents to help kids.(given his past) There are homeless kids, I know, but how did they get there, by no fault of their own. I don't feel sorry for him, and I think there is more to his disturbing charter, and obsession with children than meets the eye. I think the article in itself was disturbing. I mean, it is wonderful when a person has an unconditional love for his fellow man, especially when that fellow man is a beautiful child. Come ON Rabbi, the only thing that is lost or confused is Michael Jackson. Sounds like you are guilty of buying into the hype and not the majority of the rest of us. Personally, I don't think it is us that is out of touch with celebrities! I believe it is the other way around.

inkywhip

11/21/2003 08:20:09 AM

I continue to hope that sites like Bnet, which allow "the rest of us" to share with each other in an open medium will be one of the means of equalizing the capacity of individuals to become known to each other and have a positive influence on each other more or less 'outside' the dollars-driven marketing media industry. Incarnadine

inkywhip

11/21/2003 08:19:58 AM

Michael, on the other hand, seems incapable of seeing the 'big picture' that the rest of us do. He seems to operate from an immature and very incomplete understanding of psychology and life itself...most likely because he has never achieved psychosocial maturity. And Shmuley is right to point out that the layers of separation between 'idols' and people necessitated by security concerns, etc. as well as managers, etc. who don't want their gravy train derailed are a big problem for celebrities. As is the attitude of 'fans' that produced the situation in the first place. Jewel pointed out the behavior of several 'fans' in her last book, and M & M's rap about an obsessive fan who blames the artist for his life's problems mirrors the exact same thing. Incarnadine

inkywhip

11/21/2003 08:04:48 AM

Aril, As far as I can tell, the main problem Micheal has is not acting in a 'childlike' manner, it is acting in a 'childish' manner. As a father, I am perfectly capable of playing with my son in a child- like manner. It is fun, and I continually seek ways in which to augment our play in ways that both keep him interested and foster his learning. However, that is the point, even in play, while the outward appearance may be childish, the parent brain is still working, and the capacity to step into the role of protector, disciplinarian or healer is always there. Incarnadine

Aril

11/21/2003 05:55:08 AM

Whether or not the money bells are ringing, Jacko is the stupid one here. He refuses to take consequences for his actions- after the last bout with molestation, you would think he would be smarter about his actions. But sitting and cuddling with a 14 year old boy on national television, and talking about how "charming and sweet" it is to sleep in the same bed with children that are not his own are the actions of someone who is obviously not right in the head. I could tell from his television special that he wanted to come off as the eternal child, naive and sweet, but to me he came off as someone who needs some serious mental help. Watching him be childlike, climbing trees and such made him look like an absolute fool. I hope that the accusations are unfounded for the child's sake, because you never get over molestation, but if they are true- I hope they throw the book at him.

bbdh

11/21/2003 05:51:02 AM

BS"D It was decent advice attempted by the Rabbi and could have avoided much pain for MJ. Sometimes it is hard to accept advice from someone so outside one's familiar territory and sphere of influence.

day7pac

11/21/2003 04:28:27 AM

i think these people are crazy especialy the mom in all of this.it seems pretty strange that now tha michael said its time for you to get out of my house and live your own lives now all of a suden the boy has been abused,i here$$$$$$ bells some where..

Yadayada

11/21/2003 01:08:32 AM

Hmm, Manthing, your post is pretty hilarious from one whose profile says he believes in 'my good name'. Do you still believe in the fairy tale that it isn't bought and paid for in this country? sheesh. From greling we expect nonsensical drivel. Alas, pure drivel is hard to find. . . *G*

manthing

11/21/2003 12:27:20 AM

Good one, Greling! This installment is even more flaccid, consisting mostly of feeble attempts at name-dropping. "America is increasingly becoming the land of damaged celebrity" shows how out of touch Boteach is with the spiritual undercurrents of this country. Not that you could expect much better from the clergy of an intolerant, elitist religion, but geesh, one has to wonder, what rock did B'net dig this guy out from under?

greling

11/20/2003 06:39:31 PM

"...today we see to uncover the enigma of Madonna..." Well, rabbi, you certainly aren't exempt from this category, are you?

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