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03. A Community Outraged

I have heard from several MJ fans in the past two weeks who have told me how the trial has taken them to a dark place, making them feel angry and depressed. I thought a guilty verdict would make me feel relieved but it actually left me feeling kind of empty. Although justice was served, it doesn’t bring Michael Jackson back. 

I know the trial has taken its toll emotionally on everyone – fans, friends and family – so I was hoping that once the verdict came in we would be able to put it all behind us and move forward, but there is one thing preventing us from doing that: the documentary Conrad Murray filmed.   

Like many other fans, I was outraged that television stations would even consider buying this documentary and I joined in the quest to let our disgust be known, staging a boycott and making a plea to advertisers not to sponsor it.  La Toya Jackson even got involved, tweeting about her efforts to stop it and, although hesitant to do so, Jermaine talked about it briefly on Piers Morgan as well. Now I understand his hesitation, because all that attention to it just compelled the public to want to watch it more, a fact which those who aired or will be airing the program loved.  
 
However, I would like to appeal to the companies associating their products with programs like these. Think twice about supporting them because they can affect your brand negatively by doing so. David R. Hawkins, M.D., Ph.D. said it best in his book Power vs. Force.  The idea he presents is that anything that makes people experience positive feelings gives them strength, and anything that makes people experience negative feelings makes them go weak. In reference to companies who sponsor programs that evoke negative feelings, he wrote, “Advertisers who buy time during TV programs that make people go weak will find their products unconsciously associated with these negative feelings.” 
 
It will be easy for those people who watch the program to judge Michael negatively for what Murray said in it because they haven’t walked in his shoes. I believe he was under extreme pressure, emotionally, physically and financially, to deliver the This Is It concerts. I also believe that La Toya was right about him being fearful for his life as she wrote in her book Starting Over. The intense anxiety those two things alone must have produced in him obviously affected his every waking and sleeping moments. Unless you have been through something like that yourself, you can’t possibly understand what he was going through. 
 
The documentary is disrespectful to Michael's memory and a slap in the face to his family, and his fans. It adds insult to injury. The pain of his loss has been great for so many people and to let the man responsible for his death have his say in a setting where he doesn’t have to be under oath is despicable. 
 
Although we are a community outraged by this documentary, we will rise above it. We have proven that it is possible for people of all ages, races, countries, and religions to come together and achieve great things. We may not have stopped the program from airing but it won’t bring us down. This community is stronger than most people think because our foundation is based on love and with love comes power. Although the network executives believe this will make millions of MJ fans tune in out of curiosity, that is definitely not the case. Fans are uniting together to turn the TV off
 
 
It’s time we rid ourselves of the negativity associated with the trial. For my own peace of mind, I have to shift my focus back to love. Recently I saw that some fans were upset at a comment that was made by a Jackson family member who expressed that those outside of their family can’t possibly know the pain they have endured at the loss of Michael. I agree with that because we don’t know their thoughts, we can’t feel their emotions and we don’t know the extent of their love for Michael, because we aren’t them. 
 
However, the opposite is also true. The Jackson family can’t understand the pain the fans have endured either because they aren’t us. Although the heartbreak of his loss has affected everyone differently, one person’s pain does not negate the other. We all love Michael. The gift we can give him is “to learn to live and love each other before it’s too late,” as he said in his Exeter UK speech in 2002. 
 
We can also show him love by asking one question. A question he pleaded for all of humanity to ask. The one humanity never asked him:
 
What More Can I Give? 
 
The answer is always…Love
 
Yet, once again he was not shown any. 
 
 
Linda Higgins
Director of Community Development
 

© 2011, Linda Higgins, All Rights Reserved

 
This is Michael Jackson’s plea for humanity. 
 

 

 
 
 
 

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