The backlash over Barbra Streisand’s highly controversial comments, which suggest that the two boys Michael Jackson is accused of molesting were thrilled to be there, has garnered the superstar singer a barrage of online criticism, the likes of which she has perhaps never experienced in her six plus decades old entertainment career.
It is as if she had committed the unforgivable sin as Twitter went on a feverish rampage which continues to this day, despite an apology.
For the sake of clarification, the controversy began on Friday, March 22. In an interview with The Times London, Streisand displayed some sympathy for Michael Jackson, saying:
His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has… You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be there… They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.
Streisand also state that she believed the accounts of the two accusers, Wade Robson and James Safechuck. But she did not say much more to support of the two nor did she appear to show any sympathy for what they may have gone through as children. Thus, her comments drew widespread criticism from Twitter and other social media platforms.
Taking note of ire she had ignited, on Saturday Barbra Streisand apologized for saying the two they were thrilled to be with Jackson.
TMZ seemed to framed the story in an update as they capture, both Barbra’s deference to Jackson and her apology:
Barbra Streisand believes Michael Jackson was a child molester, but she also believes his victims got a bonus and the sexual attacks didn’t kill them.
In their updated story, TMZ provides a timeline of events.
Starting at 1:15 PM PT — Instead of apologizing, Streisand attempts to clarify her previous comments to The Times London, saying,
To be crystal clear, there is not situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone… The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them. The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.
At 6:40 PM PT TMZ notes that Streisand apologized, saying, “I am profoundly sorry for any pain or misunderstand I caused by not Choosing my words more carefully.” So after approximately hours to consider the fact that her clarification had done nothing to redeem her brand she finally gives a full throated apology. Streisand adds:
I didn’t mean to dismiss the trauma these boys experienced in any way. Like all survivors of sexual assault, they will have to carry this for the rest of their lives. I feel deep remorse and I hope that James and Wade know that I truly respect and admire them for speaking their truth.
However, despite Streisand’s full throated apology, social media is not so easy to appease. Case in point, Tamara Mason Zgod speaking directly to Streisand from her Twitter account, states:
The things you said were so vile that they cannot be called a mistake. You said exactly what is in your heart. How we think affects how we feel and how we feel affects what we say and do. You feel deep remorse that the world sees you as you really are.
How do you combat comments like this? Tamara’s statement is just one are of many thousands of Twitter comments condemning Streisand for being insensitive to Michael’s alleged victims. In another tweet, Sarah Slanders writes:
Honestly, I kinda feel like she [(Streisand)] thinks it doesn’t matter whether it happened or not and she just doesn’t care… “The wanted to be there” and “It didn’t kill them” to me, is some pretty strong “oh so what, they’re fine, eff them poors ad leave him alone” energy to me.
One of the more emotional tweets cam from the Twitter handle of Greenleaf Fowers who tweeted:
Being molested at age 5-8 destroyed me Barbra. I paid $1000.00 to see you in concert and own all of your movies and music. I am 57 and am still not over being molested. I will never listen to your music or movies again! Bye (like you care)!
That is just three tweets but they seem to tell it all. Streisand’s comments may, in fact, have somewhat damaged her career. Even at the age of 75, Barbra Streisand is still earning morning for concerts to movie and music residuals. But if nothing else, her recent comments may perhaps put a stain on what is left of her career.
Yes, Streisand has apologized, however, it appears that the Michael Jackson backlash continues despite her apology.
Written by DiMarkco Chandler
The Times of London: Barbra Streisand at 76: dog cloning, art collecting and being a grandma
TMZ: BARBRA STREISAND ‘PROFOUNDLY SORRY’ For Michael Jackson Comments
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Barbra Streisand is under fire after saying Michael Jackson accusers were ‘thrilled to be there’
Featured and Top Image Courtesy of Jonathan Tommy’s Flickr Page – Creative Common License