The minute Michael Jackson took his last breath, albums started flying off the shelves, an army of "faithful" fans took to the streets professing their undying love for "The King of Pop," and everyone from celebrities to musicians hailed him as their storybook hero.
Where were they when Michael Jackson was alive? Throwing stones to hide their hands.
Suddenly, the lynch-mob media are nowhere to be seen. Gone are the "Wacko Jacko" days. The pedophile days. The freak days. Because everybody loves him now.
On every street corner, people are donning MJ gear, rediscovering his music. His movie, which opens nationally October 28, is selling out fast. People can't get enough of his posthumously released single This Is It, which hit the airwaves this week. Before his death, DJs refused to play his songs. But now, Michael's on heavy rotation at radio stations spanning the globe.
The same media that exploited Michael Jackson when he was alive are now exploiting him in death.
I saw through it then, and I definitely see through it now.
I've listened to Michael Jackson's music and danced to his songs since I was in diapers. I never joined the ridiculing mobs.
The sudden MJ mania gives me mixed feelings. On one hand, I'm thankful new fans are finally getting his message of peace and love. On the other, I wish these same people didn't take his incredible talent for granted when he was still here. All this love could have spared his life, a life cut short just weeks before his big return to the stage -- 50 sold out shows in London's O2 Arena. Now all I'm left with is a refunded ticket -- and questions. What could have been?
There are rumors that hundreds -- maybe even thousands -- of unreleased MJ tracks are out there, which excites, yet saddens me. Michael will live on in the hearts of adoring fans through his music, while big shot execs who failed miserably at promoting his last two studio albums, HIStory and Invincible, cash in.
After years of fruitless effort and countless request calls to get radio stations to play his music, they finally have. All Michael had to do was die. His new single is receiving praise from critics, while being played on every mainstream radio station in the country. Rightfully so. It's a message of love from the voice of an angel.
Michael still wanted to heal the world, even when the world kicked him when he was down. We lost a one-of-a-kind musical genius, magical entertainer, giving humanitarian, and most importantly, a father, a brother, a son... a human being. Well, Michael, the world didn't realize what they had until you were gone.
Keep New Times Broward-Palm Beach Free... Since we started New Times Broward-Palm Beach, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of South Florida, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering South Florida with no paywalls.