Well-Intentioned Family Members Making Matters Worse? – MJEOL Bullet #82

There have been reports lately about a “rift” between members of Jackson’s family, Michael Jackson, and the Nation of Islam. Appearing on the Abrams Report Friday, Feb 6, family friends Stacy Brown and Firpo Carr claimed that there was dissension between the family.

According to reports, there are “sources close to the family” that claim there was a fight between Jackson’s security and some of his brothers. This is, as of yet, unconfirmed. For the record, neither Firpo Carr nor Stacy Brown are spokesmen FOR Michael Jackson himself.

Whatever affiliation they have with other family members has nothing to do with Michael Jackson. What is at the heart of this discussion, however, is the damage being done by well-intentioned or attention-seeking family members and/or friends who run to the media to air their often unfounded “concerns” about Michael Jackson’s life. It should be stated that Michael Jackson makes his own decisions and he has publicly spoken about people running to the media.

This is from a statement released by Jackson Feb 6:

“My 39 years in the entertainment industry has afforded me the ability and experience to make my own decisions. I am not being dictated to, and I talk to whomever I want to talk to. ‘If my friends love me as much as they’ve indicated, then they’d do me a great favor by not being so eager to air their personal concerns about me in the media, which will avoid causing me further embarrassment’ “ (see [url=http://forum.mjeol.com/index.php?showtopic=13947]Jackson Denies Rift…[/url]).

This quote should be plastered on a billboard on every corner in every neighborhood, and erected in the front yard at Havenhurst. There are many people who are “concerned” about Jackson, but have rightly taken it upon themselves to set Jackson’s feelings above their own need for inclusion inside his inner circle.

There are others, however, who are “concerned” because their access to Jackson is not ‘whenever-they-want-it-however-they-want-it”. As if Jackson does not have enough on his plate already! Is it so unreasonable to give him the benefit of the doubt if he can’t return a phone call as quickly as those who are “concerned” think he should be able to?

Knowing full well how the media spins out of control with anything that can be misinterpreted where Jackson is concerned, one would think certain family members and “concerned” friends would be more discrete about what they say to the press.

One could also surmise that as bad as they are taking this situation, it is a thousand times worse for Jackson–whose ass, not to mention his credibility and his legacy–are all on the line right now. Attempting to further embarrass him via the media certainly won’t get Jackson to return a phone call.

Some “concerned friends” have taken it upon themselves to go to the media with half-truths, misinterpretations and misunderstandings, and portray those things as fact. This obviously is not helping their object of concern: namely Michael Jackson. Having to worry about poorly organized press conferences from people who are not authorized to speak on his behalf–although the intentions may be genuine—as well as interviews with ‘friends of the family’ spreading unfounded rumors, and false reports about his personal life are certainly not decreasing Jackson’s stress level.

This weekend, there were assurances made, by way of Jackson himself releasing a statement and calling Fox News’ Geraldo Rivera, that there are in fact people who have taken it up themselves to speak on behalf of Jackson but who are not authorized to do so.

These people, again however well-intentioned, should let Jackson speak for himself. Also, there were further assurances that Jackson is currently taking the offensive and assuming a more hands-on approach when dealing with the media. Armstrong Williams, conservative commentator who recently spoke to Jackson, told Rivera:

“Listen, Michael Jackson is just sick and tired of people running around speaking in his name and telling untruths. I mean, this man is under a lot of pressure. He has some very serious allegations against him. He wants people there speaking for him who really knows him.” (see [url=http://site.mjeol.com/modules/news/article.php?storyid=464]Rivera Outs Masada, Jackson Mad as Hell[/url]).

It seems the bottom line is that “concerned family and friends”, who have taken it upon themselves to tell Jackson what’s best for him, are causing many more problems than they’re solving.

Everyone seems to think they know what’s best for Jackson and if their own needs don’t get met, then it’s somehow someone’s fault. The focus of media conversation is on the Nation of Islam, when that laser-like focus should be on the district attorney apparently scrambling to put together a case against Jackson, on the very damaging court documents released by the father of the accuser, on the lack of corroboration of these allegations, on the fact that this same family was investigated by Child Services–while the DA is claiming abuse occurred–in which they denied repeatedly that any abuse was happening or had happened, on the fact that court documents show the family has a history of lying to the authorities, and on the fact that this same family wanted to go on television with Ed Bradley in Feb 2003 to publicly defend Jackson.

Some “concerned family members” and “concerned friends” either don’t care or don’t want to admit that their public whining is far from helping the situation. My advice: Jackson’s a big boy. Let him make his own decisions.

Put Jackson’s current feelings above your unreturned phone calls and try to be supportive without having to speak directly to him every five minutes. Jeez.

-MJEOL

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