There's an old saying: You can't choose your family. And it's true. The family of Michael Jackson honored his memory Tuesday in Los Angeles, and I do not wish to intrude on that. They are entitled to grieve any way they want.
But Michael Jackson's place in America is a legitimate topic of discussion, and "Talking Points" is just about fed up with all the adulation. It's basically grandstanding and pathetic in the extreme. Yes, the man was an all-star entertainer. That's it. So enough with the phony platitudes, OK?
The truth is that Jackson's interactions with children were unacceptable for any adult. His incredible selfishness, spending hundreds of millions of dollars on himself while singing "We Are the World" should make any clear-thinking American nauseous.
And why are Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton making this a racial deal? Jackson bleached his own skin and then chose white men to provide existence for his in vitro children. I mean, give me a break with all this. To hear Sharpton speak on Tuesday, you'd think Mr. Jackson was Martin Luther King Jr.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
REV. AL SHARPTON, CIVIL RIGHTS ACTIVIST: Those young kids grew up from being teenage comfortable fans of Michael to being 40 years old and being comfortable to vote for a person of color to be the president of the United States of America. Michael did that. Michael made us love each other. Michael taught us to stand with each other.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
And if you disagree with honoring Jackson the man, watch out. Congressman Peter King called Jackson a pedophile, an assessment not uncommon, and was immediately branded a racist. NAACP official Hazel Dukes and Congressman Bobby Rush both said vile things about Mr. King.
The message is very clear: If you criticize Michael Jackson, you hate black people. Nonsense, un-American and unacceptable.
If you like Jackson, fine. No problem. That's your right. If you do not respect him, that is fine as well. Dukes and Rush are playing the race card pure and simple. They should be ashamed.
The crowd outside the service was much smaller than predicted. The service itself was very well done, but the media coverage was a bit bizarre. I mean, there's something surreal about watching Katie Couric analyze things with Kenny "Babyface" Edmunds. And Charles Gibson didn't exactly look relaxed doing play by play.
The whole deal illustrates just how crazy the USA is becoming. A cowardly media will exploit any event for ratings. Remember, the same people extolling Jackson today were the ones giving his child molestation trial gavel-to-gavel attention. And after Michael Jackson was found not guilty, the American media did not exactly elevate him to hero status, did it?
But now that he's dead, most likely from an accidental drug overdose, he is a hero. How does that work? How does that happen? Just another day in media world.
And that's "The Memo."
Pinheads & Patriots
America is a great country, but we still have shameful situations to deal with. Outrages like domestic and child abuse. Well, Los Angeles Dodger manager Joe Torre runs a charity called Safe at Home. This week, they had a big fund-raiser in Westchester County, New York. Lots of big names attended. For helping out the defenseless, Joe Torre is a patriot.
On the pinhead front, remember Joyce DeWitt in "Three's Company"?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JOHN RITTER, ACTOR: Hi.
JOYCE DEWITT, ACTRESS: Where'd you spring from?
RITTER: I've been walking behind you since you got off the bus.
DEWITT: Why didn't you say something?
RITTER: I was enjoying the view from the rear.
DEWITT: That's not my best feature.
RITTER: You've never seen it walking up the stairs.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Well, last Saturday, the now 60-year-old actress was arrested for DUI in California. She's out on $5,000 bond. If convicted, Mrs. DeWitt will be a pinhead, because driving while impaired is a danger to all of us.