July 7, 2009
Today, the world remembers an icon, gone too soon, in a public and private memorial that promises to be an unprecedented historic occasion. Am sitting here, glued to CNN coverage of the Staple center and other clips of this star whose light went out unexpectedly but not unannounced. Unlike many of the baby boomers who have thronged the memorial grounds but admitted that his music was before their time, i was a part and parcel of the "thriller " craze back then and connected with the millions of people mourning Micheal Jackson's death ever since it was announced.
Nevertheless, i marvel at the frank outpouring of love and appreciation on a man once villified by this same crowd, AFTER his demise.
Why did none of these folks in his hometown in Indiana, his fellowstars now clamouring to sing at his memorial, the black hollywood artistes now claiming him as their 'own', and millions of regular folk sending flowers and leaving mesages like 'Micheal, i will always love you', not say so this loudly when he was alive? Especially when he was condemned by public opinion for unspeakable crimes even though a court of law acquitted him of all charges (leaving him a shadow of himself )? Why wait till he is dead? All that comes to me is what the preacher in Eccles 11v8 said,"Vanity of vanities,all is vanity".
Why do we as humans often pour out our hearts and sincere appreciation when the subject is long dead letting posterity do all the good work as usual? When my earthly father, a strict disciplinarian died, i wrote a small epitaph for his obsequies. It was written in the third person.Due to logistics, it was never printed alongside the others, but i noticed that all the others were written in the first person , as if he would get to read it. Many said those three words, i love you, for the first time. He went to his grave never hearing those words from these kids.
In a bid to earn some money , Micheal jackson died and is selling more albums in death than he probably could have dreamed off alive.Except for the lone vicious comments of Rep Peter King, the whole world of young and old, hip and not-so-hip, black and white, unanimously express their love for a man that is now viewed simply as any other man with human frailties like the rest of us. I am no judge as to the innocency or guilt of MJ, leaving that job to His Maker, but feel a great sense of loss for this tragic figure who is blissfully unaware of the outpouring of emotions on his behalf . Let us , especially in Africa, learn to show timely appreciation.
"A word spoken in season , how good is it" Pr 15v23. Today, amidst the media blitz of Micheal jackson memorial, this message rings out to me and you.