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Northwest Voices

Seattle Times letters to the editor

July 10, 2009 at 4:00 PM

Michael Jackson coverage: Enough already!

Media oversaturates audiences with Jackson death

Enough already — no more Michael Jackson.

According to a recent poll, two out of three Americans believe the media’s coverage of Jackson’s death has been over the edge. I couldn’t agree more. For almost two weeks, we have been saturated with tributes to him. He has been portrayed as an iconic and historic hero.

I am not saying he wasn’t talented or that his death isn’t a huge loss, but Jackson was a celebrity and an entertainer. He was not an American hero. Speaking as the mother of a son who is deployed in Afghanistan, I’m convinced the men and women who serve in our military are our true heroes. Violence is escalating in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and U.S. troops are losing their lives. How is it possible that the death of a superstar is more important and receives more coverage than the deaths of our soldiers serving overseas?

Reports say Jackson was an insomniac and died from an overdose of an anesthetic administered as a sleep aid. One could say Jackson may have unintentionally caused his own death.

Soldiers in combat do not cause their own deaths. Bombs and bullets do that dirty business. As a military parent, I do not sleep well at night, nor do the families and friends of our soldiers who are in harm’s way or have fallen. Yet all the public hears and reads about is, “Now Michael Jackson can rest in peace.”

Somehow our society has lost sight of what is important. I am sorry that Jackson is gone. I feel more sorry that our soldiers and our loved ones have been set aside in the sad pursuit of what is considered by many to be real news.

— Julie Bonnette, Kalamazoo, Mich.

Soldiers, not Jackson, deserve tribute

This past week, nine American soldiers were killed in Afghanistan. They received no national tribute, not even on the Fourth of July.

Instead, the media and millions of Americans celebrated the apotheosis of a burned-out, drug-addicted rock star.

Who will represent America in the annals of history? Those who died in the service of their fellow citizens or those who squandered talent and wealth on narcissistic fantasy?

— Alfred LaMotte, Steilacoom

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