I'm going to start off by saying that a lot of people are going to be utterly pissed off by what I'm getting ready to write here, but I must say that I've held my tongue, with no intentions on saying anything at all, out of respect for the departed and the bereaved. However, I think the hypocrisy that has reached a startling high, has given me the extra push needed to write a little something down.
I would also like to add a disclaimer to this post, stating that, I have been an avid follower and fan of Michael Jackson, for as long as I can remember. I remember huddling into my parents bedroom on Monday nights when a new video was being released; and begging for a Michael Jackson "Ken" doll; and my uncle buying me a red leather jacket like Michael's (even though it was for boys), after I screamed and cried and promised never to ask for another thing as long as I LIVE; actually crying and feeling just a little faint when he walked out onto the stage at the Capital Center; and watching Thriller over and over again through the holes in my godmother's afghan, until I was too excited about knowing all the dance moves to be afraid anymore; and of course, watching Moonwalker several times EVERday, until my tape popped, then, learning the art of "fixing" popped VHS tapes (this was my first experience with a screwdriver), and remembering exactly where the tape skipped over the scotch tape...somewhere right around Smooth Criminal. So please, don't mistake my intentions here.
We all saw the disastrous BET awards last night. I think we can all agree that it was a mess, although there were some mildly entertaining parts. Truthfully, what made the show such a disaster was the effort made to honor Michael. One has to know, BET spends the entire year, or a good portion of it, preparing for the annual awards show. They were asked, this year, 72 hours before the show was scheduled to air, to change EVERYTHING, and make the show about Michael. Of course, they immediately swung into motion calling on folks who were guaranteed to be free, like New Edition including Bobby Brown, to add a little spice to the tribute. I feel they would've done better to get Day 26 to do the opening tribute, they certainly would've moved a little freer than the Senior Citizens that were New Edition, but I guess the "has beens" fit a little bit better into the budget than the newbies...or maybe they just thought they were going to get points for nostalgia from generation X'ers, but it really just turned out be an embarrassment (Bobby Brown in a mohawk...please).
While I could go on and on, the BET show isn't the purpose of this post, it was just the responses to the show and the alleged disgrace of Mike's memory that has made me a little hot. I'm constantly hearing people suggest the show should've been more substantive, that there should be more thought and care put into the tributes, and memorials. And my question to all of you that feel this way is, "Why now?" Everyday you're, swaggin' and surfin'; never leaving the house without FIRST turning your swag on; wishing you could f*ck every girl in the world; begging to be somebody's boyfriend #2; all while feeding on a healthy diet of cookies and applejuice...again, I could go on, but you get the picture. All of a sudden, people who have lived their lives with little to no purpose, are actually requiring something of substance out of this world. How dare you?! How dare you, all of a sudden decide to care about something other than yourself, and have the gaul to post articles on facebook, change your profile picture, and post youtube clip after youtube clip, and expect anyone to do anything but roll their eyes (as I've found myself doing almost simultaneously as my facebook page loads every morning).
Exactly what did we expect last night? Did you expect for a show that is already a borderline coonfest, to completely switch up production after months of preparation and put together, in 72 hours, a show worthy to be called a tribute to Michael Jackson? Someone, please tell me what you would've done? I know there's no way that BET stood a chance of ever coming close to the vigils you each have on your myspace and facebook pages, but just for arguments sake, what did you expect? You can't spend your life concerned only about yourself, and how the actions of others will effect you alone, and expect anyone to take you seriously when you finally find a cause you consider to be worthy. And what is that cause really? Micahel Jackson? Are you fighting for the cause of Michael Jackson? Or have you found something else that will draw more attention to you? Just another reason to post something and start a string of comments on your status message? Out of all of the posts that I've seen (and there have been hundreds), not one has said anything about carrying on, or attempting to carry on the legacy that Michael Jackson left behind in his philanthropic work. The comments range from those that have crawled out from under their rock of indifference concerning anyone but themselves and posted a tribute, to those suggesting that their should be no tribute, and citing his child molestation allegations, and all around suspect behavior over the past decade, as reasons for oversight. But not one person said anything about the philanthropy. Many people forget that he was the one that made it "cool" to be a celebrity who gives back. Thus, one might venture to say, he was the only one to do it without any altertior motives. Once again, in all of our conceit and self-indulgence, we have missed the mark. So change your profile pic, already...and get back to what you know best...you.