Pete King Attacks the King of Pop

David Neiwert has a really, really good response at Crooks and Liars to Rep. Peter King’s unhinged rant against Michael Jackson.

The rant:

King: Yesterday I marched in two Fourth of July parades in Wantagh and Massapequa Park. Today I was talking a walk through Wantagh, here at the American Legion Hall, the firehouse down the street, the fire memorial a few blocks from here. And it really reminded me of, you know, the great men and women who’ve sacrificed so much for our country — people fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan today; cops, firefighters, teachers, none of whom really get much credit. And yet for the last, I don’t know how long now, this lowlife Michael Jackson, his name, his face and picture is all over the newspapers, television, radio. It’s all we hear about, is Michael Jackson.

And let’s knock out the psycho-babble. This guy was a pervert, he was a child molester, ah, he was a pedophile, and to be giving this much coverage to him day in and day out, what does that say about us as a country?

I just think it’s too — we’re too politically correct. No one wants to stand up and say we don’t need Michael Jackson. He died, he had some talent, fine. But people are dying every day. There are men and women dying in Afghanistan. Let’s give them the credit they deserve.

I really think the media has disgraced itself. I think there are too many people in public life who have made fools of themselves by talking about Michael Jackson as if he’s some kind of hero.

There’s nothing good about this guy. He may have been a a good singer, did some dancing. But the bottom line is would you let your child or grandchild be in the same room with Michael Jackson? What are we glorifying him for?

So anyway, let’s take some time out to really look to the people that do make this a great country — the men and women in the armed forces, police, firefighters, teachers who work in really rough neighborhoods, people who volunteer with dying cancer patients, people who work in AIDS clinics — they’re the ones we should be glorifying. Not some pervert like Michael Jackson.

And Neiwert’s sensible, temperate, intelligent response:

Let’s stipulate a couple of things: First, we don’t disagree with the sentiment that the media ridiculously over-cover celebrity deaths like Jackson’s. Our objection, though, is about the absurdities of the cult of celebrity, and not whether or not Jackson deserved the adulation.

(And it must be pointed out that the adulation heaped upon Jackson is largely the product of the free-enterprise system that Republicans like King vehemently defend at every nook and cranny — except that belonging to a black man.)

Second, a lot people’s recent distaste for Jackson does indeed revolve around the question of his bizarre relationships with children, and we wouldn’t minimize those issues either insofar as there is any factual truth in them (nor, for that matter, have they been ignored in the media coverage).

But someone should point a couple of things out to King:

– Jackson in fact was cleared of all charges relating to his supposed molestation of children. So there is no factual ground for claiming that he was a “pervert” or a “pedophile”.

– It’s a fine thing to honor the men and women who perform the many tasks of public service he mentions. But you never honor these people by tearing other people down — rather the opposite. Vilification of celebrities does nothing to glorify society’s unrecognized heroes, and indeed is counter to the very reasons we honor them — which is to recognize and appreciate the contributions of all hard-working Americans. Including even those who happen to be celebrities.

Finally, speaking of morally degraded people … one wonders where Pete King’s outrage was when it came to the people who created the Bush torture regime. Talk about skewed priorities.

I’m sure that King will be shocked to learn that Jackson fans are now organizing to fund his defeat at the polls.

And I will be rooting for them to kick the bum out.

Author: KATHY KATTENBURG

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4 Comments

  1. Great– just when I thought the media coverage would have a hope of dying down, “Michael Jackson” is dominating headlines again, thanks to Peter King.

    This, like the Letterman-Palin thing, is just going to give Mr. Jackson more popularity than ever. Enter “Peter King” in Google News, and all you get are headlines like “The New Elvis: Michael Jackson's Ghost Sighted Everywhere” (which cite Peter near the bottom).

    Thank you, congressman, for making a political issue out of this.

    For example, if you want coverage of Peter King to stop, you do NOT publish an article, “Peter King is a Lowlife Intolerant Racist” or some such. No, you IGNORE his tirade and let him fade.

  2. I heard that tape on MSNBC Morning Joe .. it infuriated me. Not only, because there were money-grabbing freeloaders following the man-boy around, but if Rep. King (and yes I am well aware of who he is and used to think him decent – maybe he had a stroke and it affected him) … anyway, many of us were molested as children. Who speaks for us? In my day we didn't even know it was wrong .. something just didn't feel good about your inner self as you were growing up. How many step-fathers, fathers, uncles, brothers molest little girls and boys too for that matter? How many scout leaders, Catholic priests have been exposed AND CHARGED. If we are found innocent in this country we're supposed to be considered INNOCENT. If we're found guilty .. well, that's another story .. talk to all the guys who have been in for years and someone finally steps up and proves their innocence.

    Vote Peter King out .. he's a hater .. we don't need any more haters in our country or those who incite haters either.

    Thanks … Granny

  3. Peter Boy is just an idiot! He probably complained about the James Brown coverage too. It's definitely racially motivated. You can look at this fool and tell he was raised in an environment of ignorance. It's all he knows. Say Petey, you are suppose to be a professional. What happened? Go to counseling and get some help to rid yourself of all of that hate. Focus on yourself…. I know there is some dirt on you that will come out soon….. When it does, don't open your big mouth! Just take it!

    DeeDee

  4. The greatest theft from American taxpayers, ever, has occurred and is still happening on Wall Street yet Peter King chooses to speak out against the media over their coverage of Michael Jackson??? Peter King obviously is part of the problem and probably not very bright either.

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