would you have left your kids alone with michael jackson?

Not the “late-70’s-early-80’s-talented-handsome” Michael Jackson, but the “circa-1999-plastic-surgery-nightmare-scandalized-all-to-hell-wearing-bandaids-on-his-face” Michael Jackson. Consider the following points and counterpoints when formulating your answer:

P) He was obviously disturbed and/or mentally-ill.
CP) He was considered rather childlike and gentle by friends and family.

P) He was the target of very serious allegations of child molestation.
CP) Never proven guilty, no evidence to back up the allegations. DA was obviously biased.

I never believed the accusations made against him, but I certainly wouldn’t have left my kid alone with him.

Your thoughts?

The childlike thing is exactly why I would not leave my children with him. He seems fixated at a certain age, liking a certain group a bit too much, and that can be a sign of pedophilia. And how clueless do you have to be to let children sleep with you?

It doesn’t mean I believe he was a pedophile, Before I knew any better, I hung out with kids all the time, and was pretty childlike with them. I’ve had a child I babysat come in and lay in my bed while I was in it. While I knew enough to get out of that situation quickly, I could see someone else not knowing that. Heck, I could see MJ as being completely asexual and socially clueless. But I don’t see any harm in being overprotective in this case.

ETA: No, I wasn’t a crappy babysitter. Sis was doing the babysitting at the time, not me. But I did babysit the kid occasionally when Sis couldn’t.

Although MJ was an entertainer, this isn’t about entertainment, so I’m going to move it to IMHO.

twickster, Cafe Society moderator

No, I wish the OP had done a poll, that would’ve been interesting

When I read the title of the thread I thought…well no, he is dead and would scare the crap out of them.

Would I leave my child with a mentally-stunted lunatic who admittedly finds nothing wrong with sharing a bed with small children? Sure, I fail to see the problem.

I don’t leave my kids alone with *anybody *until I’ve gotten to know them personally, not from tabloids. Would I leave them alone with him if my personal impressions of him matched the Wacko Jacko story? Absolutely not. Would I leave them alone with him if my personal impressions were that he was a sweet man who was maligned by the press, and perhaps even had some unusual but not pedophilic ideas about affection (not sexual) between children and adults? Yeah, probably. I run with hippies, I’m comfortable with people who love (not sexually) children and have remained childlike at heart.

And I feel completely filthy that I even have to put in so many disclaimers about sex in that paragraph. I blame society, honestly, that I (and come to think of it, Michael Jackson in at least one interview) have to qualify “love” when it comes to kids. Blech.

What do you mean by “leave alone with”? In a room? For a sleepover?

I would not leave my child alone for a sleepover with anyone whom I did not personally know.

NWIH

I wouldn’t let my kids near him if I were present. So, no to the OP question.

No way. Regardless of whether the man was actually guilty of molestation, he really didn’t seem to have a good grasp on right and wrong.

This sums it up nicely for me. I don’t know if he was guilty of molesting children or not, but I find it disturbing that he kept putting himself in situations where a child could make those accusations. I am having a hard time thinking of a scenario where it is okay for a grown man to sleep in the same bed with a child who he is not related to. And on top of it, he vigorously defended doing so. I guess our ideas of what is appropriate are not the same, so no, I would not have allowed my child to be alone with Michael Jackson.

No. My theoretical kid presumably has enough “normal” people to hang out with. Why would I even want to add Michael Jackson to the mis?

It seems the obvious answer is, “DUH, no fucking way.” I certainly wouldn’t let my kid near the guy (or, as other posters mentioned, near anyone I didn’t know well enough). But this begs the question: why the hell did so many people let their kids go off with him? Even AFTER the scandals? I can’t figure it out. Money, maybe.

I don’t know whether he was truly a child molester or not, but why take the chance? And even if the pedophilia accusations had never emerged, he clearly was not all there in the sanity department.

So, no way in hell would I leave my kids alone with him. Would I let them meet him and hang out with him (under my constant and vigilant supervision)? Maybe, if one of my kids really, really, wanted to. But I’d prefer not.

Sexual allegations aside, don’t forget he dangled a baby off a hotel balcony. If that’s not being irresponsible around children I don’t know what is.

I don’t know if he diddled kids or not, but he was The Strangest Man On Earth. When he died, my biggest concern was, “Who’s The Strangest Man On Earth now?”

No, I wouldn’t have left children with TSMOE.

You people are hilarious. The above made me laugh way more than it should have. Well, who is the Strangest Man On Earth now?!

I don’t really imagine leaving my kid overnight with someone that I don’t know well, so no.

Absolutely not due to worries about sexual abuse, though - I never saw anything that begins to suggest that he had a sexual interest in children. It seems quite clear that the allegations were entirely spurious.

That said, I wouldn’t volunteer my kid to be used as a prop for his ongoing therapy, and I wouldn’t want them modelling his screwed up behaviour.

Mel Gibson

ETA: Am I Right?