Wow, this is an unexpectedly strong stance!
The Leaving Neverland documentary was a very convincing portrait of Michael Jackson as a child molester who preyed on young children and scared them into silence.
If you believe the things he was accused of by Wade Robson and James Safechuck really happened, it is impossible to ever think of the King of Pop the same way again.
But what happens to all that great music? Can you still listen to it? Or is it yet another victim??
Multiple radio stations around the world have decided to stop playing Michael Jackson songs altogether following the four-hour reminder of the allegations.
In New Zealand, where Michael was once hugely popular, MediaWorks Radio operates nine nationwide stations and even more regional ones. And they have chosen to remove MJ from their airwaves. Director Leon Wratt explained the decision in a statement to CNN:
“Michael Jackson isn’t currently on any MediaWorks Radio stations’ playlists. This is a reflection of our audiences and their preferences — it is our job to ensure our radio stations are playing the music people want to hear.”
And others have agreed. Rival NZME‘s entertainment director Dean Buchanan did not commit long term, but did say for now the Thriller is gone:
“NZME station playlists change from week to week and right now Michael Jackson does not feature on them.”
And publicly funded Radio NZ confirmed they would only play Jackson’s music as “part of a news story or to provide color around a commentary piece.”
Meanwhile the CBC is reporting three major Montreal stations have taken the same route in removing the King of Pop.
So do you agree with the move to censor Michael’s music?
Obviously if you aren’t buying the accusations against the Beat It singer, you’ll have no problem continuing to rock out to Billie Jean and Smooth Criminal.
But if you’re on the side of the accusers, if you believe Jackson did those things, can you still look in the mirror while listening to Man In The Mirror? Can you still Remember the Time without, you know, remembering the really bad times?
In short, can you separate the art from the artist? Do you think other people should?
Let us know what you think about this ongoing, difficult question:
[Image via Rudi Keuntje/Future Image/WENN.]