A Focus on Michael Jackson in John Jeremiah Sullivan's Article Back in the Day

Topics: Michael Jackson

Why Does Time Make Michael Different? In this day and age American’s are more inspired by celebrities than their own parents. Celebrities are posed on every magazine cover in the store, on the news, and the Internet, it is impossible to not get sucked into the latest celebrity gossip. Tabloids are constantly shoving rumors down reader’s throats, even if the reader knows the rumors are false, they still end up purchasing them. No matter how many lies are told, or how much plastic surgery a celebrity has received, modern American’s still idolize them; however, that was not always the case.

In his article, “Back in the Day”, John Jeremiah Sullivan brings attention to Michael Jackson, and his numerous changes and flaws throughout the years.

Sullivan uses examples of how Michael Jackson was accused of multiple plastic surgeries, being gay, and a child molester, not only were these accusations addressed in this article, but they were all over the news and all the tabloids.

American’s believed the rumors, even though none of the readers knew the real story or the real Michael. Sullivan addresses the topic of plastic surgery by introducing Michael Jackson’s first surgery, a rhinoplasty in 1979 due to a broken nose. This was the first of over one hundred operations for Michael Jackson. People began attacking him because of these surgeries; however, nobody has the right to judge another person because of their own decisions. I truly believe that Michael Jackson pursued his surgeries so he would be happier with himself, and there is nothing wrong with that.

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Additionally, Michael Jackson was unfairly accused of being a homosexual man. Time after time he denied these rumors and nobody believed him. Many believers claimed the proof was his voice and the way he dressed. It is unfair to accuse someone of being a homosexual by those two reasons. Michael Jackson was just a true believer of love.

Loving men, women or children does not mean a person is gay or a pedophile, it just means that Michael was an overall loving person, which is what everyone should be. There was never real evidence that proved that Michael Jackson was molesting young boys, but over and over again he was accused of doing so. These rumors haunted him for years after his first accusation, and he looked for help. Michael Jackson began taking medicine to cope with the pain, and those drugs eventually killed him. Just like every celebrity, Michael Jackson deserved the equal idolization as everyone else. In George Packer’s article, “Celebrating Inequality” it is pointed out that American’s idolize celebrities, even though their success is based on leaving everyone else behind. Just in the last 20 years, the American outlook on celebrities has changed drastically. How is it fair that Kim Kardashian can go through multiple plastic surgeries and not get the public’s judgment, but when Michael Jackson pursues plastic surgery the whole nation judges him.

Michael Jackson was one of the first well-known celebrities to be judged by the nation due to the media, and that was not fair to Michael. He wanted to be happy, and to pursue his own dreams, but the public’s judgment ruined that for him. In more recent years, celebrities like Neil Patrick Harris have come out as gay, and the modern pop culture applauds him for it, but when the gay rumors about Michael Jackson were circulating throughout the news, he was put down for it. George Packer also states that celebrities now are very superficial; however, American’s are completely okay with that. But during the last 30 years, when Michael Jackson was in the spotlight it was an issue for American’s. He additionally talks about how celebrities such as Jay Z was a crack dealer before he became famous, but instead of holding that against him, fans celebrate it because they think of it as an early sign of hustle and smarts.

During the summer of 2014 celebrity, James Franco was accused of molesting an underage girl, but his crime was soon after forgotten because many American’s idolize him. This accusation shows how times have changed in American pop culture. People forgot about Franco’s molestation charges months after, but Michael Jackson’s accusations followed him for over 10 years. In American society, both people and the way of thinking changes daily. I understand why the accusations against Michael Jackson were so popular with the tabloids back in the day, because Michael Jackson was one of the first celebrities to be accused. But what I do not understand is why celebrities now, who were accused of the same things as Michael Jackson, are still idolized.

Michael Jackson went through years of pain and torture because of rumors, but in today’s society celebrities only have to deal with the pain for a few weeks. Michael Jackson deserved more from the American society than what he got. Michael loved everyone, and everyone needed to love Michael for Michael, and not just his music. If so many people did not flood his life with hatred and guilt, like they refuse to do to other celebrities, the King of Pop would likely still be alive today.

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A Focus on Michael Jackson in John Jeremiah Sullivan's Article Back in the Day. (2022, Mar 05). Retrieved from https://paperap.com/a-focus-on-michael-jackson-in-john-jeremiah-sullivan-s-article-back-in-the-day/

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