While I openly believe that 24-hour news networks are the worst thing ever to happen to journalism, I chose MSNBC’s coverage of Michael Jackson’s Memorial for hip-hop journalist Toure.
[Blogger's Note: Don't ever call him a "hip-hop journalist". Trust me.]
On one hand, I believe Michael Jackson deserves a large celebration of life. I think it’s great that we can all gather at the Staples Center, on television and on the interwebs and such. On the other, I think Mike deserves better than some of the grandiose, self-serving fuckery that has taken place in his name since June 25th.
I don’t expect better of MSNBC, or any other news network whose pursuit of ad revenue-attracting content outweighs any and all journalistic integrity. When they make inappropriate comparisons and asinine conjectures in hopes of masking a lack of education and preparation, I can’t even flinch. I’m already desensitized to it. This is why I exist. When there’s a black carpet and posterboard for celebrity guests to pose in front of like Harlem drug dealers in the early days of crack, I can’t help but think of those in attendance looking to shine in the face of Mike’s death.
Yes. I’m talking to you, Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton.
As Smokey Robinson delivered an anecdote about Jackson’s greatness from youth, I was stricken with how disparate his testimony was from those of many who had graced the stage before. Robinson obviously knew Michael, appreciated him and was there solely to remember him. Robinson’s words quelled a discomfort and anger welling within me from watching Magic Johnson deliver one last KFC commercial for the peoples. We already know Al Sharpton knows how to stick it to the white man and unearth all that is sacred in the process. Texas congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee put on her best churchin’ spacesuit and got traction for her Barbara Norton-esque bill intent on wasting our tax dollars by officially naming Michael Jackson a legend… whatever the fuck that means.
Michael is the best to ever do it. He doesn’t need a fucking bill. Sheila, however, needs a reason to be remembered come re-election time. Being the first to jerk Mike in office might just be the ticket.
I avoid funerals like a motherfucker. I’ve attended entirely too many in my short life. From my understanding, they are for remembering, giving thanks and supporting family of the deceased. While we all mourn in different ways, that self-seeking shit need be checked at the door.
Michael probably understands, though. I guess the pursuit of attention at any cost is only human nature.
With all that said, it was a pleasure to spend this morning and afternoon with you all reflecting, laughing and yes, crying. I’ll continue to honor Michael by upholding a standard of excellence and integrity, thus looking out for my niggas.
Yes. By “my niggas”, I mean you.
Questions? Comments? Requests? Never can say goodbye? email@example.com
If anyone cares to celebrate when I die, let it be documented that I want y’all to do my shit like they do in New Orleans. Remember the good shit. Shake ya monkey ass. Raise your player hater chalice, then cry liquor… my nigga.