|Speeches & Statements|
Over the years, Michael Jackson made speeches, announcements and statements reflecting his philanthropic and peace-oriented pursuits on occasion of award ceremonies, press conferences and other special events. He also made other inspirational statements. And here are some of these efforts:
Jackson’s favorite song from the 1978 musical ‘The Wiz’, in which he plays the Scarecrow, is, according to him, “Believe In Yourself”. He reveals at the time: “It’s the one that Diana (Ross) and Lena Horne do [at the end of the film]. It’s called ‘Believe In Yourself’, and it’s my favorite because of what it says. I like what it says.” This song in question reads: “If you believe, / Within your heart you’ll know / That no one can change the path you must go. / Believe what you feel / And know you’re right, because / The time will come around / When you say it’s yours. / Believe there’s a reason to be, / Believe you can make time stand still, / You know from the moment you try / If you believe, / I know you will. / Believe in yourself right from the start, / You’ll have brains, / You’ll have a heart, / You’ll have courage / To last your whole life through. […]”
In 1983, he pays tribute to comic hero, Charles Spencer "Charlie" Chaplin, on the latter’s birthday, April 16, several photos of Jackson and pantomime actor, Samir Kamoun, having been published with them dressed as Chaplin and performing their own tribute to the late actor and director. Charles Spencer Chaplin, who died on Christmas Day in 1977, has been a significant professional and personal influence on Jackson since his childhood and, as he puts it: “This is in memory of a great man who has touched the hearts of the world with his art of making people laugh and cry. You will always be in my heart. I love you, Charlie Chaplin.”
On occasion of the 1984 Bobby Poe Convention, the entertainer is awarded the first "Neil Bogart Memorial Award” - on behalf of the "Neil Bogart Memorial Fund" - (today titled "The Bogart Pediatric Cancer Research Program"), for which he declares the following: "I’m sorry that I couldn’t be with you tonight to shake all your hands personally, but I wanna thank all of you attending the "Bobby Poe Convention" for all the support you’ve given me over the last three years. I also wanna tell you what an honor it is to be chosen the first recipient of the "Neil Bogart Memorial Award”, and that it will always stand out as one of the most treasured honors of my career. Again, my sincerest thanks to Bobby Poe and all those involved in this wonderful Convention. Thank you very much.”
On July 5, 1984, on occasion of a Jacksons’ press conference at former restaurant, "Tavern on the Green", in New York City, USA, Michael Jackson expresses his disagreement on the American Victory Tour’s high prices and announces that he would donate his entire share of money to charity. He declares: “We're beginning our tour tomorrow and I wanted to talk to you about something of great concern to me. We've worked a long time to make this show the best it can be. But we know a lot of kids are having trouble getting tickets. The other day, I got a letter from a girl in Texas named Ladonna Jones. She'd been saving her money from odd jobs to buy a ticket, but with the current tour system, she'd have to buy four tickets and she couldn't afford that. So, I've asked our promoter to work out a new way of distributing tickets, a way that no longer requires a $120.00 money order. There has been a lot of talk about the promoter holding the money for tickets that didn't sell. I've asked our promoter to end the mail order ticket system as soon as possible, so that no one will pay money unless they get a ticket. Finally, and most importantly, there's something else I am going to announce today. I wanted you to know that when I first agreed to tour, I decided to donate all the money I make from our performances to charity.”
Before the recording of “We Are The World” begins, January 28, 1985, at A&M Lion Share Studios in Los Angeles, California, Ken Kragen, one of the organizers, addresses the group about distributing the proceeds from the record sales to be funneled directly to the target audience. Bob Geldoff, organizer of Band Aid and Live Aid also speaks to the group. Afterwards, Michael Jackson shyly describes the song as “a love song to inspire concern about a faraway place close to home”. On the back cover of “We Are The World” – the book are comments made by some of the members of “USA For Africa” project (United Support of Artists for Africa), including Jackson’s thoughts and feelings on the song: “When I was asked to write the song, I put my soul into it. That’s really my statement.”
While on the Australian Telethon in Perth, 1985, the entertainer declares: “It was wonderful – it was a wonderful experience to see all the children, and I loved it. […] Well, I’m happy to be here, everybody has been so wonderful and so kind, it was worth the trips – a looong flight, but it was worth it. [smiles]. […] I’m happy to be here. Thank you for having me.” Jackson, who also pays a visit to the ‘Princess Margaret Children’s Hospital’ in Perth, as well as the ‘Cohuna Wildlife Sanctuary’, has been there to complete the purchase of the Beatles catalogue publishing rights.
On February 25, 1986, on accepting "Song of the Year" award next to Lionel Richie for "We Are The World", at the 28th Grammy Awards, he makes the following brief speech: "First, I’d like to thank God, and I’d like to say thank you for choosing Lionel and myself to write "We Are The World". I thank Quincy Jones, who was the greatest producer to me. And I also like to say, when you leave here, remember the children. Thank you." At an ensuing press conference, he is asked about how he creates songs and to comment a little on ‘We Are The World”. “That’s one of the hardest questions to answer, because it’s a – it just comes, songs just kinda create themselves, so I don’t wanna dissect it really, just I let it happen. […] I wanted something that the whole world could sing.”
In September, 1987, in Osaka, Japan, the entertainer announces the dedication of his Japanese tour and each performance of song "I Just Can't Stop Loving You" to Yoshiaki Hagiwara, a 5-year old boy who has been recently kidnapped and murdered. A couple of days later, while on stage in Yokohama, Japan, he reiterates his dedication of his Japanese tour to the boy, and speaks a few additional words of hope: "I'm very sorry and deeply saddened to hear about Yoshiyaki. If I could, I would rush to his parents to express my words of sympathy and pay tribute to Yoshiyaki. I would like to dedicate my Japanese tour to Yoshiyaki. Yoshiyaki, I know you're out there watching us. I hope such a brutal and heartbreaking thing will never happen again...and I love you."
On March 1, 1988, overwhelmed and awed by the outpouring of accolades he receives at the Sheraton Hotel in New York City, N.Y., where he has donated all proceeds from a concert there to the UNCF and has been recompensed with an honorary degree and award for his charitable contributions, he shyly declares: “I can’t believe I’m a little nervous, but I really am embarrassed. I appreciate everybody coming. First, I do want to thank God, who makes everything possible. Then, my dear mother and father who are in the audience, thank you for all you have done for me. I really appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.” Afterwards, he goes on with a special praise for the UNCF: "I would like to say this about the United Negro College Fund. An education opens a person's mind to the entire world, and there is nothing more important than to make sure everyone has the opportunity for an education. To want to learn, to have the capacity to learn and not to be able to is a tragedy. I am honored to be associated with an evening that says this will never happen. Thank you. I love you all." The superstar then reveals to “Ebony” why he has been and still is involved in charitable and humanitarian deeds: “I feel very fortunate to have been blessed with recognition for my efforts. This recognition also brings with it a responsibility to one’s admirers throughout the world. Performers should always serve as role models who set examples for young people.” At a press conference held at "1018", a disco in Manhattan, New York, on previewing his new four-part Pepsi ad and presenting a generous monetary donation to the President of UNCF, he says the following few words: "Thank you very much. I am very honored. I am very thankful. I love you all. Thank you." Three children then join Jackson for pictures; they are winners of a "Be Against Drugs" (BAD) write-in contest. They read their winning letters, get to meet Jackson, and win tickets to his "Bad" concerts.
On October 23, 1988, he announces a substantial donation for the Motown Museum in Detroit, Michigan: "It’s great to be here. I’m happy and proud to give back to the soil from which I came. Berry Gordy made it all possible for me, and I want to say I love you, Berry, and thank you.”
In 1989, on occasion of receiving the “Rock Over Europe Award” for Best Children Of The World Music Video, he says: “I love it. On behalf of all the children around the world, I say I love you all. Thank you very much.”
On winning Best R&B/Urban Contemporary Music Video for the socially-conscious, "Man In The Mirror”, at the 1989 Soul Train Music Awards in April, he declares the following: "I want to thank the entire public; I want to thank everybody who worked on these wonderful projects. I like to thank all the children at the Cleveland School in Stockton, California…I love them very much; and you, the public, thank you very much. I love you.”
On September 14, 1990, on being honored with the first "Michael Jackson Good Scout Humanitarian Award" by the Los Angeles council of Boy Scouts of America, he declares the following: "On behalf of the millions of past, present and future Boy Scouts, I will try to abide by your motto of being prepared and always extending a helping hand".
The music video for the racially-conscious "Black or White" was first broadcast on November 14, 1991. Controversy was generated concerning the last four minutes of the original music video, as a result, this last part was removed. Jackson walks out of the studio as a black panther and then morphs into himself. The “panther dance” or “silent panther” performance” contained in these last few minutes was Jackson’s angrier, yet misunderstood political statement against “injustice and prejudice and racism and bigotry”, as he would state in an 1999 TV interview. “[…] Within the dance I became upset and let go”, he adds. Shortly after the video’s release, the singer issues an apology statement to those that became sensitive over the mentioned scenes: "It upsets me to think that 'Black Or White' could influence any child or adult to destructive behavior. I've always tried to be a good role model and, therefore, have made these changes to avoid any possibility of adversely affecting any individual's behavior. I deeply regret any pain or hurt that the final segment of 'Black Or White' has caused children, their parents or other viewers."
On February 3, 1992, before the kick-off of his Dangerous World Tour, at a press conference from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, he issues a statement in appreciation for the sponsor of this new tour - the Pepsi-Cola Corporation – and announces the creation of his "Heal The World Foundation" ("HTW"), which, beside "Camp Ronald McDonald" and "Make A Wish Foundation", battles against AIDS and Juvenile Diabetes. He continues: "The only reason I’m going on tour is to raise funds for the newly formed Heal The World, an international children’s charity that I’m spearheading to assist children and the ecology", adding that he intends to gross one hundred million dollars "by Christmas, 1993" with the help of other benevolent donators. He also declares that "HTWF" will benefit organizations as "Camp Ronald McDonald", "Make A Wish Foundation", "Pediatric AIDS" "in honor of my friend, Ryan White", "Children Diabetes", "Minority Aids Foundation". (to view full speech, click here). After his speech, The St. Thomas Boys' Choir sing "Heal The World", which touches the singer: "When I composed the song, it was my dream to hear it performed the way they just performed it, with such innocence and beauty. It took everything to keep me from crying", declares Jackson.
During the promotion of his then newly-formed ‘Heal The World Foundation’, he states on another occasion that “There is nothing more important that I can do with my life than to make the lot of the world’s children a better one. If children can be saved and their lives improved, we can truly ‘heal the world’.” [Source: MJIFC]
While on his two-week travel in the African continent in February, 1992, he declares that "My return to Africa is a return to paradise."
On May 1, 1992, after accepting the second Point Of Light award from former President George Bush Sr., he briefly declares that "I wanted to come to lunch, because I believe each person can make a difference in the life of someone in need. That is what a Point Of Light is. I'm very, very happy to be here. I love you all. Thank you very much."
In September, 1992, during the MTV Video Music Awards telecast, a public service announcement by Michael Jackson premieres as part of MTV's "Choose Or Lose" campaign to encourage young adults to register and vote. "We live in a country where we have a chance to make a difference.", affirms the singer. "To create a better way of life for ourselves and for our children. The future is now. Let's come together and express our freedom of choice. Choose or lose.", concludes Jackson. Afterwards, a special performance of "Black Or White" from London is shown for the music video event and the audience.
The September 28 of 1992 issue of "JET" magazine reveals Michael Jackson's announcement that he will appear live during the Super Bowl XXVII Halftime Show at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California on January 31, the following year. The Halftime Show will combine his music style with his then new anthem, "Heal The World", "sending a powerful message promoting peace, racial harmony and hope for our children... from the NFL and Jackson to the entire world. "I can't think of a better way to spread the message of world peace than by working with the NFL and by being a part of Super Bowl XXVII", says Jackson, while on his worldwide Dangerous Tour.
At “Teatrul de Revista Constantin Tanase” theater in Bucharest, Romania, on September 30, 1992, Michael Jackson holds a press conference before performing his Dangerous concert there, and discusses the Heal The World Foundation tenets: “I’m very happy to be here (…) in Romania, and (?) my concert live on HBO, and to help the children. Dear friends, ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Prime Minister. These children are as dear to me as all the children of the world. Today, I’ve had the opportunity to see the face of transformation and civilization. A moment like this means healing the world. We must heal the world and ourselves. We have to weave our life like a web, because we are part of this web. Out of negligence, we have contaminated and polluted our planet and, in exchange, we hurt ourselves. In the life songs of ages is the dance of our blood. The environment is an extension of our body and it gives the pulse of love, is the orchestra of universe’s symphony. It is music’s territory and enables us to rediscover our souls. Let’s rejoice together in love today, unity and conciliation. Let’s heal everybody and, thus, heal ourselves. Let us make a covenant with life and let us celebrate with joy a new world... and healed. Thank you, […] especially, to all the children of the world. I love you all. Thank you so much.. Thank you..” Before stating his impromptu discourse, a group of children perform “Heal The World” to him.
On November 24, 1992, via a press conference in New York City, New York, he speaks about children and raises understanding on his "HTWF" and on the aids organized by his charity and himself for the war-stricken Sarajevo, Bosnia Herzegovina: His long message reads: "[...] Children show me in their playful smiles the divine in everyone. This simple goodness shines straight from their hearts. Being with them connects us to the deeper wisdom of life. These children are a reminder of the preciousness of all life, especially young lives untouched by hatred, prejudice and greed. Now, when the world is so confused and its problems so complicated, we need our children more than ever. Their natural wisdom points the way to solutions that lie waiting to be recognized within our own hearts. Children are the world's foremost idealists and optimists. It is for that reason that 'Heal The World" is organizing the World's Children Congress next year, made up exclusively of delegates, aged 8 to 16. The world desperately needs their innocent perspective on the world's problems. We have to heal our wounded planet of the chaos, despair and senseless destruction we see today. The mission of HTW, my mission, is healing. Pure and simple. To heal the world, we must start by healing our children. Today, we come bearing gifts for the children of war-torn Sarajevo. In 1992, Sarajevo has become a symbol of so much that is tragic, but avoidable in our world. Prejudice and ethnic hatred, the destruction of the environment, the shattering of families and of centuries-old communities. We are pleased to announce at this special time of year that we will turn our efforts home, to the plight of our American children. Towards this end, we are planning "Convoy USA". This will be an effort to help all Americans work together toward a single objective: to heal the children of our inner cities. This Thanksgiving is particularly special to me, with the launch of the single, "Heal The World". I wrote this song for everyone in our world, in an effort to help bring global harmony. All the proceeds of this song will go to the "Heal The World Foundation". Thank you, all, for coming. Special thanks to AmeriCares, for standing side by side to us at this project. To all of you who have supported "Heal The World" with your time and donations, our prayers and thanks […]."
In November, 1992, he releases a videotaped message for BBC's "Going Live!" U.K. show, in which he announces a press conference discussing world concerns and their solutions, as well as raises further awareness on his "HTWF" mission. The singer also announces a "HTW" contest. (view message here)
On December 10, 1992, at the American Consulate of Japan - where he is recompensed by Pepsi for his "HTWF" contributions – he makes a speech in which he extols children’s inspirational intelligence and its healing qualities. He states: "Thank you. I’m very happy to be here in Japan again. It’s very nice to see all the children […]. The innocence of children represents to me the source of infinite creativity, and I feel that this is where all my creativity comes from. This is not an intellectual kind of intelligence, but an intelligence that is full of wonder, magic, mystery and adventure. In this intelligence, there is love, there is trust, there is joy and there is beauty. It is the kind of intelligence that will heal the world. That is why I am here and that is why we are here. Thank you very much. I love you."
In 1992, he sends a Christmas message to the "Top Of The Pops" show viewers in the U.K., and to the world equally, announcing his Japanese tour in Tokyo, expressing appreciation for the response the "Heal The World Foundation" has received in England, and explaining the message of the omonimously titled song, while asking people to pursue its message by continuing to join forces with him in order to help improve people’s lives around the Globe. (view message here)
In 1992, as part of a poem narration tribute for late AIDS activist, Ryan White, Michael Jackson narrates his eulogy for his close friend, ‘Ryan White’, included in his 1992 book, “Dancing The Dream”, while footage of the late AIDS activist is shown: “I miss you, Ryan White. I miss your smile, innocent and bright. I miss your glory, I miss your light. I miss you Ryan White. You showed us how to stand and fight. In the rain you were a cloudburst of joy. The sparkle of hope in every girl and boy. In the depths of your anguished sorrow, was the dream of another tomorrow. Ryan White. I love you.”
On January 19, 1993, before performing (now fateful) song “Gone To Soon”, in memory of his friend, late activist Ryan White – who passed on due to AIDS – he speaks on White and their friendship, his immune system malady and on the necessity of supporting AIDS cure research by the incoming presidential administration: “Thank you, Mr. President elect, for inviting me to your inauguration gala. I would like to take a moment from this very public ceremony to speak of something very personal. It concerns a dear friend of mine, who is no longer with us. His name is Ryan White. He was a haemophiliac, who was diagnosed with the AIDS virus when he was 11. He died shortly after turning 18, the very time most young people are beginning to explore life’s wonderful possibilities. My friend, Ryan, was a very bright, very brave and very normal young man who never wanted to be a symbol or a spokesperson for a deadly disease. Over the years, I’ve shared many silly, happy and painful moments with Ryan, and I was at the end of his brief, but eventful journey. Ryan is gone, and just as anyone who has lost a loved one to AIDS, I miss him deeply and constantly. He is gone, but I want his life to have meaning beyond his passing. It is my hope, President elect, Clinton, that you and your administration commit the resources needed to eliminate this awful disease that took my friend… and ended so many promising lives before their time. This song is for you, Ryan.” He then gives an emotional performance of “Gone Too Soon”.
In Los Angeles, California, on January 23, 1993, on occasion of a Super Bowl XXVII news conference, Michael Jackson (who performed at the event that year) announces the creation of a new Heal The World program, with the purpose of bringing aid to the underpriviliged children of inner-city America, being supported in the endeavor by former President, Jimmy Carter. The singer declares: "[...] (We have to) get out the message of the need to heal our children and heal the world. [...] to recognize that we need each other and must care for one another, help inspire us to develop this relief effort for children. To make a real difference, we must all care and commit to be a part of the solution. I know you all share my concern for inner-city children who are spread all around us. We must join together to make this world a better place for each of them. "Heal LA" is only our first step in making things better. I'm very happy to tell you today that former President, Jimmy Carter, and I are going to be working together to help children in cities all over our country. President Carter will join me as co-Chair of our new national Heal Our Children Initiative. We'll work together here in L.A. to start, then go city by city to heal children all over America. I would like to express my love and appreciation to all of you who have already been so generous to this important new Heal The World program. [...]"
At the 20th annual American Music Awards, held on January 25, 1993 at the Shrine Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, Dame Elizabeth Taylor Presents Michael Jackson with the special International Artist Award for record sales and humanitarian efforts around the world. Since the entertainer was the first recipient of this award, actor and comedian, Eddie Murphy, announces via a taped message that it will be called as the Michael Jackson International Artist Award. Upon receiving it, Jackson humbly declares: “I love you very much, Elizabeth Taylor. Teddy Riley, you are a genius.Thank you, Eddie, thank you, all my friends. Traveling the world has been a great education for me. And if there is one insight I’ve had, it is this: wherever you go, in every country, on every continent, people yearn and hunger for one thing – to love and be loved. Love transcends – love transcends international boundaries and upheavs the wounds of hatred, racial prejudice, bigotry and ignorance. It is the ultimate truth at the heart of all creation. I would also like to thank God and my mother and father, Katherine and Joseph Jackson. Thank you once again. I love you all.” Jackson performs songs "Smooth Criminal" and "Dangerous" at the event.
On January 31, 1993, at the Superbowl XXVII’s Halftime Show, before performing “Heal The World”, the singer addresses the following words to the crowd as an introduction to the song: "Today we stand together all around the world, joined in a common purpose - to remake the planet into a haven of joy and understanding and goodness… No one should have to suffer, especially our children. This time we must succeed. This is for the children of the world".
On February 24, 1993, on occasion of winning a "Grammy Legend Award" at the 35th Grammy Awards from Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, he expresses gratitude to and concern for the world’s children, including the health and economically deprived, then raises consciousness and suggests solutions on urgent global issues, such as the inner city crimes, wars and terrorist attacks, or the overloaded prisons, increasingly entered by young people that were devoid of a proper childhood. (view speech here)
In March, 1993, Michael Jackson announces the creation of an independent film company dedicated to producing uplifting movies. It is called, “Michael Jackson Productions, Inc.”, in a statement Jackson declaring that: “I believe passionately in the power of mass entertainment and have seen how, with positive messages, it can help alleviate the problems we face, including the suffering of the world’s children.”
On March 27, 1993, Jackson discourses briefly before 1200 teachers and political figures at a meeting in the "Century Plaza Hotel", Los Angeles.
At the 1993 Soul Train Music Awards, on winning a special Humanitarian Of The Year Award, he appears on stage in crutches (following an accident of dancing at his home) makes the following speech. (view acceptance speech here)
On May 12, on receiving the 1993 “Best Selling Pop Artist” award from Princess Stephanie of Monaco at the World Music Awards at the Sporting Club, Monte Carlo, Monaco, Jackson thanks a few officials, especially his fans: “[…] Thanks to my fans around the world for making my album, “Dangerous”, the biggest selling album of '92. You continue to make my dreams a reality. Thanks to my Sony International family which made it happen. I love you madly. Thank you.” On receiving another award, the World’s “Best Selling Artist of the Era” from Prince Albert of Monaco, Jackson declares: “Thank you, your Serene Highness. I am honored to accept this World Music Award. It means a lot to me, for I sincerely believe that thorough music… […] I believe that through music we can help heal the world. It's through such charities as the Princess Grace Foundation of Monaco that this will be accomplished. Again, thanks to my fans around the world, I love you, and you wonderful people of Monaco for these honors. Merci, merci, encore!”
In August, 1993 on occasion of winning the “Our Children, Our Hope Of Tomorrow” award by the "Jack Rapper Awards", he releases a little videotaped message: "I am honored and humbled."
On February 19, 1994, at "The Jackson Family Honors" event held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, Michael Jackson shyly takes the stage in long, thunderous claps to present the night's honorees, Berry Gordy, founder of the Motown record label, and Elizabeth Taylor. He has this to say on introducing his good friend: “Today we honor Elizabeth Taylor for who she is, as much as what she does. For me, Elizabeth Taylor is the ultimate humanitarian, because she is the embodiment of love, compassion, faith, and integrity and she has been that ideal for hundreds and millions of fans over the five decades of her illustrious career. Elizabeth began her career when she was nine years old and since then, has starred in some of the greatest of all American films. She has been, and she continues to be, one of the most celebrated women of the twentieth century. I know, from having the honor of being a friend of Elizabeth Taylor's, that she's in no need of another trophy or plaque to recognize her humanitarian work on behalf of the fight against AIDS. And I also know Elizabeth is here tonight not for any ego gratification, but because this gives her another chance to get the all important message out to the public. The message of AIDS awareness and the need for compassion and the efforts to find a cure. To the formation of AMFAR in 1986 and her own Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation, no one has done more to fight this dreaded disease. But in knowing Elizabeth, I know her reward comes from the work itself, from the small battles won in the all-out war, from the gains she's been responsible for by eliminating the problem for the world to see and from the unspoken things of the victims who's lives she has enhanced during their times on earth. In the midst of my recent trials and tribulations, Elizabeth stood by my side with unwavering strength and support. Elizabeth stands for truth. She's immune to criticism and unfearful to any challenge and places the highest truth in the wisdom of her own heart and the direct knowledge of her own intuition. She is not swayed by public opinion, because she knows in the end truth always triumphs. Elizabeth, I love you and we honor you not only for what you stand for, but also for the magnificence of who you are. The world is a better place because of your existence. Because Elizabeth is so unselfish in her devotions to humanity, it is doubly fitting that she be the recipient of the Jackson Family Honors award. […]”
On receiving ‘Body Sculpt’’s ‘Caring For Kids’ award in 1994, a vulnerable-looking Michael Jackson graciously says: “I’m flattered and most appreciative that 75 thousand children from New Jersey, New York and Connecticut – I love you too.. – (inaudible) with the Choice Award, and my sincere thanks to ‘Children’s Choice’ and ‘Body Sculpt’, I love you.”
In 1994, at the 26th NAACP Image Awards, prior to presenting dancer/choreographer Debbie Allen with an award, a stronger-looking delivers a speech underlining the meaning behind the "NAACP” organization supporting equality of treatment for all races and human dignity, and exhibiting his sympathy to the “NAACP” members: “For decades, the NAACP has stood at the forefront of the struggle for equal justice under the law for all people in our land. They have fought in the lunch rooms of the South, in the hallowed halls of the Supreme Court and the board rooms of America, for justice, equality and the very dignity of all mankind. Members of the NAACP have been jailed and even killed in noble pursuit of those ideals, upon which our country was founded. [...]”. Michael Jackson also reiterates his innocence regarding then recent child abuse allegations of improper conduct towards a minor. He says, "Not only am I presumed to be innocent, I AM innocent, and I know that the truth will be my salvation. I have been strengthened to prove my innocence by my faith in God and the knowledge that I am not fighting this battle alone."
In response to a reporter's query about the lyrics of "They Don't Care About Us, ("Jew me, sue me, everybody do me, / Kick me, kike me, don't you black or white me.", "Skinhead, deadhead, everybody gone dead. / Hit me, kick me, you can never get me.") Michael Jackson gives a statement to The New York Times on June 15, 1995, which reads: “The idea that these lyrics could be deemed objectionable is extremely hurtful to me, and misleading. The song, in fact, is about the pain of prejudice and hate and is a way to draw attention to social and political problems. I am the voice of the accused and the attacked. I am the voice of everyone. I am the skinhead, I am the Jew, I am the black man, I am the white man. I am not the one who was attacking. It is about the injustices to young people and how the system can wrongfully accuse them. I am angry and outraged that I could be so misinterpreted.". In a letter to Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper, the dean and associate dean, respectively, of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, California, on June 17, Jackson continues to explain: “Unfortunately, my choice of words may have unintentionally hurt the very people I wanted to stand in solidarity with. I just want you all to know how strongly I am committed to tolerance, peace and love, and I apologize to anyone who might have been hurt." Moreover, Rabbi Hier, stresses in a telephone interview, “I've known Michael. I took him around the Museum of Tolerance, an exhibition at the Wiesenthal Center on racism in the United States and on the Holocaust. He was emotionally overcome. He cried”. On June 23, Michael Jackson resolves, despite the cost incurred, that he will return to the studio and alter the offending wording on future copies of the album. "Jew me" and "Kike me" would be substituted with "do me" and "strike me". He reiterates his acceptance that the song was offensive to some. Spike Lee, who will direct the two music videos for "They Don't Care About Us", states that he felt there was a double standard in the music industry, commenting that the use of the word nigger, in music, does not cause controversy. Additionally, Jackson, an African American himself, empathetically uses the word "nigger" on another song from the HIStory album, "This Time Around", but it did not attract media attention.
On June 22, 1995, after receiving the "Special International Artist Award" for record sales and humanitarian achievements from actor Morgan Freeman, at the VH1 Honors in Los Angeles, California, Michael Jackson draws attention to the poverty and health issues plaguing Third-World countries and their children, not before is thank-you's: "Thank you, Morgan, for your words, thank you, VH1... Thank you - thank you for this honor, and thank you - thank you , all my friends and fans for your love and support. You've given me so much, it allowed me to take some of that love and pass it on to those people whose problems in this world need and deserve our help. A perfect example is the recent U.N. announcement that 1 to 3 million lives could be saved if Third-World children were given a vitamin A pill three times a year. Cost per child is just six cents, that's all." Concluding his speech, he stresses: "So we must join together in healing the world, so we can share this beautiful planet in joy and love. I love you very much."
On receiving the special Artist of a Generation Award at the 16th edition of BRIT Awards on February 16, 1996, Michael Jackson declares the following: “I love you. Thank you – thank you BRITs Awards and Sir Bob (Geldoff). I’m humbled by this award. It is especially important coming from my wonderful family in the United Kingdom. You provided me with so much love and you’ve given me your loyalty and your support throughout my entire career, and a special thanks to Paul Russell… [To chanting fans] I love you.. I love you.. I love you all and especially, I love all my fans very much. Thank you.” Jackson performs “Earth Song” prior to being offered this award, and following the performance, he informs the audience on the gravity of forest depletion, children deaths and famine, including alarming statistics such as areas of tropical forests being burned every minute, 3 hundred (?) children dying every minute, or 300 children dying from hunger every minute, the singer requesting for unified involvement on behalf of people, joining him in these relief efforts. He reiterates this speech after performing the mentioned song at the 1996 World Music Awards in Monaco, Monte-Carlo.
On March 19, 1996, Michael Jackson, (later, also on behalf of several other partners such as Sony Music), announces, in Paris, France via a press conference, the launch of the joint venture, "Kingdom Entertainment", with Saudi Arabia's Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal bin Abdul Aziz Al-Saud (the Prince also making a statement on the project), a Paris-based multimedia corporation meant to promote entertainment based on "traditional family values". Jackson, who created the project's logo of a jeweled Excalibur-style sword in a rock, appreciates that "global family entertainment could bring peace, brotherhood and love to the world." (read full speech here) The company’s first major project will be the sponsoring of Jackson’s HIStory World Tour, to begin at the end of that year. They would also be involved in film projects and family entertainment. Meanwhile, in March, MTV announce that HIStory is the best selling double album ever in the United States.
In 1996, on the eve of his HIStory Tour II concert in Tunis – sponsored by the newly formed Kingdom Entertainment - , he issues the following statement: "I am particularly delighted that this concert will be in Tunisia, a peaceful and tolerant nation which cares equally for men, women and children. Proceeds from my concert will go to a national charity helping the needy, and that's an extra source of satisfaction for me". The mentioned charity is "The National Solidarity Fund", which fights against poverty.
At the 1996 World Music Awards in Monaco, Monte-Carlo, May 8, Michael Jackson performs “Earth Song” and draws awareness to the world’s degrading state, wins a total of 4 awards, including the World Music Awards Best Selling Pop Male and World’s Best Selling R&B Male Artist presented to him by Albert II, Sovereign Prince of Monaco. The singer has the following to declare on receiving his awards: “I love you more. Much more… these awards from you and the World Music Awards are very special to me, as a person who loves and adores and has concerns for people of all nationalities and ethnic origins. My music serves as my way of making mankind aware of the inquisities that exist against all people of all the world. […]. I am not and never have been anti-semitic. And do me a favor: don’t read the tabloids. I love you all very much. And this is our future right here [the children]! I love you.” All the proceeds from this yearly show go to the Monaco Aide and Presence Foundation, which assists underdeveloped areas mainly in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Brazil. So far, many projects have been successfully carried out.
In 1996, Michael Jackson sends a televized get-well and gratitude message to Mandy Porter - we assume the famous horsewoman - who suffered a recent injury: “Mandy. Mandy Porter. I hope you're feeling better. I miss you and love you and tell all your friends who worked on the dance performance, that was brilliant. Tell them I loved it very much and enjoyed it very much. May you have the best of joy and peace and good health in the future and forever. Love always, M.J.”
In Sun City, South Africa, July, 1996, while in South Africa for a few days, Michael Jackson makes a speech, in which he raises awareness on abuse undergone by children around the world, setting himself as an example of helping to alleviate the lives of deprived categories suchlike and urging others to take action against crimes suchlike. "We are behaving like people without compassion and love for the most vulnerable section of society. The children of the universe are without a spokesperson, they are voiceless...We are all touched by the atrocities committed against children: sexual, physical abuse, child slave labor, educational neglect. We feel ashamed. Angry. Appalled. But there is no action....No action.", the performer declares. At a press conference held there, he gives an emotional discourse to the people of South Africa: “First, I would like to say, sincerely, from the bottom of my heart, you have no idea how happy and honored I am to be here in South Africa. The people here have been so kind to me… their love, their generosity, the hospitality has been overwhelming…[…] I mean, I’m saying this from the bottom of my heart, ‘cause I really mean it. And I’m not wearing these glasses to be Mr. Cool, I wear these glasses because this is like a side (?), so you won’t see the tears… [voice trails off] I’m so happy to be here and you all have been so wonderful to me and I want to thank you so much and I – I thank you for coming to Sun City… I would like to take this opportunity to thank President Nelson Mandela and the wonderful people of South Africa… for this gracious, really gracious welcome to your wonderful country. I just love it.. I love it so much, I’m thinking about a house to buy here [laughs]… I would like to thank the wonderful wonderful (inaudible) and the staff and its hospitality and hosting this conference. And I’m sorry I was not able to play in South Africa days previously, because I was so undecided before coming here. But now I am really excited about bringing the HIStory Tour – a brand new show, the HIStory Tour to South Africa. We are in negotiations right now, but we’re planning [to tour in] South Africa in mid January, 1997, in Capetown, in Durban and Johannesburg. My promoter, Mr. Marcel Avram is here today to announce additional dates and answer any questions you may have regarding the HIStory World Tour. I love you from the bottom of my heart [voice trails off] and I thank you so much for your wonderful wonderful (footage breaks off)”. On leaving South Africa, July 20, 1996, he has this to say to the African people and Nelson Mandela: “It is my pleasure, it is my honour to be here in South Africa. I love you people very much. I've had the time of my life here. I've had so much fun, I hate to leave. And I'm definitely looking for a home here to buy, ‘cause I would love to spent the rest of my life here. And we're definitely coming in January. And this is a wonderful, lovely man. I love Nelson Mandela very much. And thank you for all your hospitality.” He also divulges that he has been working on a song about Mandela: "I was working on it last night (July 19)".
On September 13, 1996, during his HIStory Tour in Bucharest, Romania, Michael Jackson is invited at the Parliament Palace, where he attends a folklore performance - music and dances - by children dressed in traditional Romanian attire, after which is received on stage by the children, chanting his name and thunderously applauding him. They also perform a few song remakes in Romanian of famous anthems, such as Stephen Foster's "Oh, Susanna" or The Beatles' "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da", to which Jackson happily bops his head and claps his hands. When he is invited to take the stage, he makes the following appreciative discourse: “This performance was one of the most amazing performances I’ve ever seen in my entire life. And I’m not just saying that, I really mean it from my heart. It was the highest in artistic presentation and I only wish all of the world leaders could be here to see this, because I think they would think twice when they so quickly send our brothers to the killing fields. Because this is our future – all the children. And I love you so much. And… [children loudly chanting his name] I just once again wanted to say thank you very very much, and from the bottom of my heart I truly and endearly love each and everyone of you. Thank you so much.” (from a rare footage provided by LovinTheKingOfPop on YouTube)
On February 13, 1997, Michael Joseph “Prince” Jr. is born to then wife Debbie Rowe and Michael Jackson – their first child. A happy, but concerned Jackson issues the following statement regarding parenthood, one of his most ardent wishes: "Words can't describe how I feel... I have been blessed beyond comprehension and I will work tirelessly at being the best father that I can possibly be. I appreciate that my fans are elated, but I hope that everyone respects the privacy Debbie and I want and need for our son. I grew up in a fish bowl and will not allow that to happen to my child. Please respect our wishes and give my son his privacy.”
On May 28, 1997, the President of Poland at the time, Aleksander Kwasniewski, hands a plaque over to Michael Jackson on behalf of the city of Warsaw: “I’m not a person of many words. But I am deeply touched and honored to receive this. And, for me, Poland is such a lovely, lovely, lovely place… To me, you are people of courage, honor, bravery, resilience, and, most of all, class. And I just want to say, I’d actually like to live here. [smiles] I’d like to organize "Children’s Day" here… It's a holiday time not only for children, but also their parents.”, declares Jackson, while on a brief, yet elaborate tour in Poland regarding the construction of a unique family theme park there. Major of Warsaw, Marcin Swiecicki, and Jackson sign a letter of interest in which both parties agree to prepare for the park’s contructions, and upon signing the “preliminary letter of intent”, he addresses a few words to the officials: “I’d like to say thank you, Mr. Mayor and everyone around the table for – and my great friend, Jacques, who, pretty much, make a dream come true. And I have something to say: I’ve been around the world six times since I was a baby, and no other country has touched me like Poland has.” He will later send in a special phone message: “To the people of Poland..hmm.. I wish progress, development, prosperity, to become one of the greatest nations of Europe. Happiness, love and peace for all the children of Poland. My heart is with you. Forever.”
A 1996 or1997 part of a conversation between Michael Jackson and a Polish friend is leaked. In it, the singer speaks passionately on Polish people and his concept behind a theme park he dreamed of creating in Poland. “Listen!... This is my idea and this is who I am, this is my soul. I always think about family. Parents and children having fun together. That is the concept. Poland needs to be a place that is on the map, it has dissapeared on the map - all of this mockery, Polish ‘polack’ jokes… Listen, I wanna give Poland class, give an honor, I want people there coming (to) be schocked”, Jackson can be heard emphathically saying.
Michael Jackson arrives in Korea in October 1996 for his History concert there, a performance which Korean fans will always remember, as a conclusion drawn from some of the Korean forums. He will once again come to (South) Korea for an unofficial, private visit on November 22, 1997, where he will tour the Jeju Island. Upon viewing the island, he exclaims: “If I can, I would really want to live in this paradise place in the world.” “If the island was given to me”, he jokes, “I would make my performances here. It would be great if I can buy the whole island, I want here to be my holiday resort.” The second time that the entertainer will arrive in South Korea will be in 1999 for his ‘Michael Jackson and Friends’ special benefit concert. Through a SBS TV live broadcast that year, he will state that “If ever North and South Korea reunify, I will come back to South Korea on that day and put up a memorable performance.”
On May 5, 1997, Michael Jackson makes an appearance at "Gran Premio Internazionale Dello Spettacolo”, an Italian TV award show, where, on behalf of himself and late tenor, Luciano Pavarotti (also present on stage beside him), announces plans for putting together a charity project (“Pavarotti and Friends – For War Child” benefit concert in Modena, Italy): ‘It’s been our dream for a long time to do something for the children of the world. It’s been my passion and it has been his passion for it. […]”, the singer declares. “So, so, the idea was to have as – have Pavarotti and myself as the protagonists to announce it to the world and to pretty much organize like a cavalcade of stars to, to support us and sing this wonderful song where all the, you know proceeds, will go to children of the world […]”, Jackson says. He also briefly adds that “[there is] The Three Tenors [concert] on the 17th of June in Modena and I wanted to join them…”. Jackson was also there (at "Gran Premio Internazionale Dello Spettacolo”) to present an award for Best Show Of The Year.
On July 9, 1997, during a "HIStory" Tour concert in Sheffield, England, he takes part at ‘The Variety Club Of Great Britain – Central Counties Region’, also called the Variety Club Sunshine Coach, a children’s charity annual event, for which he makes a dedication: “Just briefly... I’d like to say children will always hold a special place in my heart, so from Heal The World and myself I present... this present [hands over a pair of keys to an official]… And there's more where this comes from. Thank you.”; afterwards, he signs autographs to two ill girls, one of them being confined to a wheelchair.
On May 15, 1998, Michael Jackson holds a press conference to unveil plans to found the World Peace Foundation for Children, and, in relation to it, to organize a series of concerts intended to to be “a mega event with the potential for great historical significance” for the Korean people, and to raise public awareness to the need to help the scores of dispriviliged children around the world. The proceeds from a concert in Seoul, South Korea, would benefit the Korean Peace Foundation for Children, the first subsidiary group to be formed as part of the WPFC. (view speech here). The concerts will be scheduled later than planned, in 1999, (one being held in München) and become part of a new project, titled "Michael Jackson & Friends - The Adventure of Humanity".
Michael Jackson joins African leaders in Namibia in a call for debt relief and in urging for a new era for the world's poorest region, especially the children. On May 16, 1998, the superstar tells the annual Southern African Economic Forum summit in Windhoek that he will donate funds to make the world a better place for its children. Jackson says that he and his new business partner at the time, Barden International, will be looking at global investments that will bring economic empowerment to the the people, and enrich the lives of children. "We are going to put our money where our mouths are," states Jackson, visiting Namibia in his private capacity to appraise investment opportunities.
On March 20, 1999, Michael Jackson makes an appearance on the German TV show, ‘Wetten Das..?’, presented by Thomas Gottschalk, to announce his plans to stage two concerts (in Seoul, Korea, and Munich, Germany), with the mission to raise funds for The Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, the Red Cross and UNESCO. The singer explains his motivation behind the staging of these shows: “What happened was… I – I knew that I – I knew that I had to do something, I just think that it’s on my back and, you know, between now and the millennium, and do nothing… And then, I had this idea for a song and – and the words, “What More Can I Give”, kept me. And then, I knew I had to do something. And about the same time, I was talking to President Mandela, and when he invited me to perform, it was all the inspiration that I needed…[smiles] […]” A representative of the entertainer intervenes to add that the purpose of Jackson’s concert in Munich is justified by the unification of Germany ten years before, in the context of many countries splitting, while his concert in Seoul is staged on the grounds that “Michael really wants to get the message across that North and South Korea [must] unite”. Jackson performed songs “Dangerous” and “Earth Song” at ‘Wetten Das..?’ in Germany four years before.
Another official statement of Michael Jackson is made in relation to the “Michael Jackson & Friends” benefit concert scheduled in Seoul, Korea: “We will be holding a concert, a benefit concert, in Seoul Korea, on June 25th for the needy children in North Korea and in Kosovo, Africa and everywhere else in the world. I have wanted to help these suffering children for a very very long time. These innocent children are in such pain because of the greed and political disagreements of us adults.”
On March 23, 1999, Michael Jackson meets Nelson Mandela at the President's residence, Genadendal, in Cape Town, South Africa, to announce charity concerts fully entitled "Michael Jackson & Friends - The Adventure of Humanity", the singer’s shows being centered upon "the concept of giving" and the theme-song, "What More Can I Give". "I shall be undertaking 2 concerts in June, one in Seoul, in the Republic of Korea, and one in Munich", he says. Jackson also speaks of the necessity of people helping "end the needless suffering in the world" and further urges that people donate to the best of their possibilities to charity, informing that the monies raised on occasion of the mentioned concerts – that he hopes to amount to millions - are due to benefit the "Nelson Mandela Children's Fund", "International Red Cross" and "UNESCO". The singer names Mr. Mandela "my inspiration to want to do something before the end of the century, to undertake what I call "An adventure of humanity", before the birth of the millenium. I love this man very much and I love Africa." He adds: "It is right to announce this project here in the very cradle of mankind: the birthplace of us all." (more from the speech here)
On May 1, 1999, the singer makes a speech after being honored by the Indian Film Industry with the "World Humanity Award", at the Nassau Collisseum in New York, during the Bollywood Awards function. In his speech, he focuses on stating that the attention and resources he mobilizes for a worthy cause are "more than just an opportunity, but a duty", and adds: "It pains me to think we do so little for our children", in the context of a largely developed society. He also likens receiving awards to "a commission to do more for makind", using Mahatma Gandhi as an inspirational avatar of peacefully capturing the public's attention to obtaining freedom for India. (read the full speech here)
On June 9, 1999, Michael Jackson holds a press conference at Munich’s Olympic Stadium in Munich, Germany to speak about his upcoming “Michael Jackson & Friends concert - The Adventure of Humanity" concert.
After completing his "MJ and Friends" concert in Seoul, South Korea on June 25, 1999, he holds a speech before the audience, in which he draws attention to the war-torn country, expressing appreciation to its President for improving the life quality of the country, and announces his hope to raise financial and moral support, as well as global awareness for the Korean people. (read speech here)
On September 4, 1999, on being honored with a humanitarian Kora award at the 4th Kora-All Africa Awards, in Sun City, South Africa, he declares: "Africa, I love you. I thank you very, very much for this wonderful honor. I love you all very, very much. Thank you."
On May 18, at the 2000 World Music Awards in Monaco, Monte Carlo, Michael Jackson, who receives the 'Male Artist Of The Millenium' award for the best-selling recording artist of all time in the male category, is being introduced by Prince Albert of Monaco, then makes the following acceptance speech: “Thank you very, very much Prince Albert. I'm incredibly honored to have been chosen to receive this award. I'd like to thank the World Music Awards and especially the fans. And you are the reason...you are the reason, why I continue to do what I do. I've been performing... I love you too [to screaming fans]. I love you. I've...I've been performing since I was 5 years old, so I haven't had what you call an ordinary life, but I've been blessed with so many extraordinary opportunities and so many wonderful, wonderful friends all over the world that I wouldn't change a minute of it, really. I love you more! And I am so proud to thank...I thank God, and I am so proud God gave me the gift of song. And the world gave me the opportunity to be heard through music. And it's because of moments like this I can say with all my heart that I'm very proud to be an entertainer. And... You ain't seen nothing yet!”
In October, 2000, Michael Jackson makes an announcement on plans to launch a project, titled "The Children’s Initiative" (later renamed "Heal The Kids" and launched on February 14, 2001), in partnership with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach. As part of the initiative, Jackson and Boteach were also in the process of writing a book "focusing on the lessons that we adults may learn from the incorruptibility and openness that is inherent in children". The singer states his reasons for being implicated in the project: "There is simply nothing more important to me. It’s about all the beautiful lessons that adults can learn […] It has always been my wish to dedicate the blessings and talents God has given me to the world’s children. The Children’s Initiative is the fulfilment of my heart’s dream, to recondition the world to the infinite blessing that children represent."
On December 6, 2000, after receiving the "Angel of Hope" award from the G&P Foundation for his efforts in combating cancer, he reminds the audience of that "Cancer is the number one killer of children and it is only when we join together on evenings like this, that we can summon the courage and determination to stop it from ever robbing another child of the precious gift of life, or a parent of the joy of watching their child grow." He also remembers the merits of invitee and Nobel-Prize winner, Professor Elie Wiesel and children’s expert, Dr. Stanley Greenspan, for joining him at the formal dinner.
On February 14, 2001, Michael Jackson’s Heal The World Foundation and The Seminar Center present a Valentine’s Day Seminar at Carnegie Hall in New York City. The event, organized by Jackson and Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, promotes family love and is the first public event by the "Heal the Kids" initiative, a HTW campaign aiming to educate the occupied adults in favor of reprioritizing their children. Jackson introduces his guests, a panel of children's experts and celebrities - who hold discourses on balancing romantic love, family commitment and professional dedication - and holds a speech pertaining to the event’s theme (read the speech here). The entertainer displays his lingering concern towards the illegal and augmentative child access to machine guns, leading to fire attacks in educational institutions, as a result to a faulty parenthood, and speaks on the importance of parents raising their children responsibly. Prior to the event, the entertainer invites his fans via a letter, to participate at the inaugural evening: "This is a serious and entertaining event and I have asked some of the top experts on love and parenting to come and talk to you", moreover, specifying that the seminar’s proceeds will benefit "Heal The Kids". (read full invitation here)
On March 6, 2001, the singer speaks to the audience, among related issues, of the effects of a faulty or missing childhood, including his own, at Oxford University in U.K., where he also introduces a proposition for Children’s Universal Bill of Rights, featuring 7 substantive tenets. (view speech here)
On March 19, 2001, on occasion of being inducted as a solo artist into the Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame - the induction ceremony taking place at the Waldorf Astoria in New York, USA, Michael Jackson has the following to declare: “Thank you so very much. […] This is such a tremendous honor and I am so happy to be here. […] I’m honored – I’m honored to be inducted twice in the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame… It’s a great blessing. For me, the gift of music has been a gift from God from the time I was a child. So, I, first of all, would like to thank my parents who bequitted me that gift: to my mother, Katherine, and to my father, Joseph Jackson, I love you both. To my brothers and my sisters, thank you, you’re so wonderful. Rabbi Schmuley, I love you. And thank you for helping me launch “Heal The Kids”. Berry Gordy, Berry Gordy, Berry Gordy, Berry Gordy!... [laughs] As it was in the beginning, so many of us – I just have to say thank you, he was so important in our lives and he is really my real inspiration and I owe him so much. Quincy Jones, thank you. We talk about a ‘thriller’. Quincy, you’re incredible, I love you, Quincy. He is the man. The glamorous – the glamorous and talented and beautiful Diana Ross, who is my – who is my second mother, I thank you. […] Thank you [to] the fans, thank you. Bye…”
In September, 2001, following the terrorist attacks in New York City, N.Y., Michael Jackson exhorts people to come in unity and raise money for the survivors and families of the tragedy’s victims, while announcing that charity song "What More Can I Give" was created both with this purpose and as a moral support. "I believe in my heart that the music community will come together as one and rally to the aid of thousands of innocent victims. There is tremendous need for relief dollars right now, and through this effort, each one of us can play an immediate role in helping comfort many people. We have demonstrated time and time again that music can touch our souls. It is time we used that power to help us begin the process of healing immediately.", the superstar declares.
Before the final all-star performance from the "United We Stand: What More Can I Give" tribute concert organized by Michael Jackson and held on October 21, 2001 in New York, in benefit of the victims of 9/11, the artist takes the audience ‘to church’ when he makes the following emotional speech in front of the audience: (read the speech here)
In June, 2002, Jackson launches an official attack on Sony Music Entertainment and head Tommy Mottola, because of their decision to cancel promotion of album Invincible. Prior to the release of Invincible, Jackson had informed Tommy Mottola that he would not be renewing his contract with Sony Music, which was due to expire in 2002. All single releases, video shooting and promotion were cancelled as a result of the feud. Jackson joins forces with Johnnie Cochran and Reverend Al Sharpton and holds press conferences and protests to speak out against Sony Music in June and July.
On June 15, 2002, Michael Jackson attends ‘Killer Thriller Fan Party’ at The Equinox in London, Britain, organized by then fanclub, MJNI. At the event, the entertainer explains that Sony takes advantage of their artists, including himself and the purpose for which that situation had to draw to a close: “[…] Let me just say this… The tradition of great performers… […] I really want you to know what I say!... From Sammy Davis Junior, to James Brown, to Jackie Wilson, to Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly… The story is usually the same, though. These guys worked really hard at their craft, for the story ends the same. They are usually broken, torn and usually just sad, because the companies take advantage of them, they really do”, he declares. “And… Sony…Sony… Being the artist that I am, at Sony I’ve generated several billion dollars for Sony, several billon. They really thought that my mind is always on music and dancing. It usually is, but they never thought that this performer - myself - would out-think them. So, we can’t let them get away with what they’re trying to do, because now I’m a free agent… I just owe Sony one more album. […] Because for every album that I record, I write… literally, I’m telling you the truth… I write at least 120 songs (for) every album I do. […] So I’m leaving Sony, a free agent… owning half of Sony! I own half of Sony’s Publishing. I’m leaving them, and they’re very angry at me, because I just did good business, you know… So, the way they get revenge is to try and destroy my album [“Invincible”]! But I’ve always said, you know, art… good art… never dies. …Thank you.” Jackson goes on to recount how singer Mariah Carey broke down before him due to the head-chief of Sony, Tommy Motolla: “Mariah Carey, after divorcing Tommy [Motolla], came to me crying. Crying. She was crying so badly, I had to hold her. She said to me, “This is an evil man, and Michael, this man follows me.” He taps her phones, and he’s very, very evil. She doesn’t trust him. He’s a horrible human being. […] We can’t allow him to do this to great artists, we just can’t. I just wanted to let you know, I appreciate everything you’ve done, you’ve been amazing. You’re so loyal! I love you all. You’ve been amazing, I love you! But still, […] I promise you, the best is yet to come!” Jackson also attends a fan demonstration of protest against Sony in New York City on July 6, in front of Sony Music Headquarters (view more information on the Sony vs. Jackson topic here: www.michaeljacksonphoto.estranky.cz/clanky/sony-sucks-/sony-sucks). Earlier that day, in front of a crowd of 350 people inside Sharpton's National Action Network headquarters in Harlem, Jackson shyly says of Mottola that "He's a racist, and he's very, very, very devilish." Following the demonstration, Jackson attended a fan event where he was awarded with the "30th Anniversary Fan Award".
On June 15, 2002 - the same day he attends the Killer Thriller party in London, the Devon county of South West England, the Exeter City Football Club welcomes the musician, who holds a speech before the public in hopes to collect monies for the club - an initial plan of his friend at the time, illusionist Uri Geller - and to support the initiative of rendering help to children with AIDS, to the African nations, and of helping them build a better future, cleaned of prejudice, war, hatred, fear and diseases as AIDS and malaria by way of education and awareness. (view more here)
On July 9, 2002, on occasion of an event at the headquarters of Reverend Al Sharpton's National Action Network in Harlem, New York, titled "Equality For Blacks In Music World", Michael Jackson, alongside a host of musicians, producers and music executives, has been invited to address issues pertaining the rights of artists, the corruption and conspiracy in the record industry system, particularly demanding better treatment for blacks from the major record companies. He stresses towards the audience the following: (view speech here)
In August 2002, Michael Jackson releases a videotaped message addressing the victims of the severe flood at the Elbe river in Germany, causing damages estimated to billions, with hundreds of thousands of people evacuated, thousands of houses destroyed or uninhabitable, and several people killed. The singer expresses his concerns and sympathies to the victims: "To the people of Germany: I send my deepest concern, my deepest and most heartfelt condolences. You are not alone, I am here in spirit with you. And you are in my prayers. Remember - God is with you. And have faith in the fact that this too shall pass. All my love and caring. I love you forever. Thank you."
In December, 2002, he delivers a televized Christmas message to the children of Germany and raises awareness on the poverty-stricken German children, as well as on those around the world, the pop star requesting that children, - whom he considers the most significant contribution of the world - their parents, relatives and friends should join in a congruous effort and like-minded unity, in hopes of recreating a worthy parenthood benefiting their families; with respect to this issue, he announces his plan of forming yet another children-based institution. (read speech here)
On June 11, 2003, on occasion of an event in his hometown, Gary, Indiana - "Salute To The Troops", the entertainer delivers a speech before being honored with a special plate for his humanitarian commitments. He says: "Gary, Indiana was the place that taught me so much about life...it is where it all began. In Gary, I sang in public for the first time, and it was the first time I danced and enjoyed (?), and it was the place I made my first record. The last time (I was here), I left Gary with new hopes and dreams, never forgetting my humble beginnings at 2300 Jackson Street. I am proud to be from Gary, this is the soul of America. After many years of talking about coming home, Gary, I came home. I have been priviliged from what I've learned and have become goodwill ambassador for so many causes around the world. I thank Gary for that. I will always remember to put back into society what Gary has taught me as a little boy. Gary, you will always have a special place in my heart...and Gary, you are more than a good friend, you are my family and [...} I love you very much. I thank you."
At a star-studded charity event held at Neverland on September 15, 2003 to benefit the Oneness NGO, and hosted by KIIS FM, he makes this short speech: "Thank you all for coming tonight. For in my opinion - in my opinion, this is a very special cause and the cause is our future and the future is our children. I will continue to fight for them for the rest of my life. I thank Rick Dees, you’re the man, and ‘KIIS FM’. I love you, Rick! [laughs] I love you, thank you so much!"
On October 27, 2003, on accepting the first ever Humanitarian Award at the Radio Music Awards, he draws focus to "What More Can I Give", the sequel of the 1985 high-grossing charitable single, "We Are The World", and remembers the 2001 terrorist attacks in New York which, apart from their tragic aftermath, also "brought us together and finally brought this project together"; afterwards, Michael Jackson presents a short film showcasing the highlights of the charitable song’s recording. (read full statement here)
On November 15, 2003, only three days before the false allegations made against him and on occasion of the Annual Power Of Oneness Awards, Michael Jackson accepts, from his Neverland Ranch, the Power Of Oneness Lifetime Achievement Award for his contributions towards the equality between races: “I feel very privileged to be the recipient of this special Oneness honor.", says Jackson. I believe that all people living together in unity is one of the most important messages we can teach our children. “What More Can I Give” is just an example for the world and how beautiful the world can- can be and what a beautiful place it can be. [...] I would like to thank, personally, K. C. Porter, a (inaudible) of the Oneness [organization], (inaudible) on “What More Can I Give” and the Spanish version’s total warrantee (?) has been invaluable. I love you… and thank you so much from the bottom of my heart. [...] Thank you so much. I love you.”, the artist declares.
On April 1, 2004, on occasion of being honored for his worldwide philantropic work – particularly in Africa – at the AASA Gala in Washington D.C., USA, he announces his support of another event hosted by AASA (at which he participates on June 4), with proceeds being directed to "provide aid to crippled children". He further speaks about discussions he has carried with African Ambassadors regarding the importance of unified efforts helping to combat AIDS, poverty and other significant issues affecting the African continent. The singer states that he has been contributing with raising awareness and proper funding for programs benefiting Africa, as a consequence of "9,000 people dying a day of AIDS", of "children who are overflowing the orphanages", or of "so many who are starving and dying of diseases...diseases that we just take aspirin for". (read whole speech here)
On January 4, 2005, on behalf of his family and himself, Michael Jackson releases a statement on his website concerning the 9.1 Mw undersea megathrust earthquake and tsunami disaster which occurred on December 26, 2004, affecting Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Maldives and killing over 230,000 people from fourteen countries. “My family and I would like to send our prayers and heartfelt sympathy to the families, friends and loved ones of those who recently perished from the horrific earthquake and tsunami, which swept through Indonesia, Asia, India, Somalia and other countries”, Jackson declares. “Our love is also being sent to those who have miraculously survived this tragedy and to those who are so courageously on-site, helping to spearhead the relief efforts. We pray for your strength, your safety and the success of your life-saving missions of love. Words cannot adequately express the shock, horror and grief we've felt, while watching news reports which have captured the massive devastation and despair. It has been especially painful for me, as I have visited these areas many times and I remember the love, kindness and warmth of the people I met there”, he also declares. I would like to encourage all of my friends, and fans, to contribute to agencies and organizations assisting in these efforts. In times like these, we need each other... we must bond together in spirit and in service. God Bless. Sincerely, Michael Jackson”.
In August, 2005, the singer officially announces work on a yet unreleased song, "I Have This Dream" (previously titled "From the Bottom of My Heart"), dedicated to the victims of Hurricane Katrina in the U.S., and written by Michael Jackson in collaboration with Prince of Bahrain, Abdulla Hamad Al-Khalifa. The song was to feature an additional group of singers, engaging in the "From the Gulf to the Gulf" project, the proceeds of which being planned to cover a certain part of the disaster’s costs. Moreover, a post-tragedy relief was planned, with the aid of the "Bill Clinton - George Bush Katrina Fund", "Push-Excel Hurricane Katrina College Relief Fund" and a trust under the wing of the "National Association of Recording Arts and Sciences". The song hasn’t yet seen the light of day due to the project being cancelled on grounds of 'misrepresentation', 'undue influence', as well as the lack of an existing company supporting the song, complaints addressed by Jackson, the latter mention being corroborated in a later lawsuit, eventually settled out of court, between Prince Al-Khallifa and the singer, in November, 2008.
On March 10, 2007, Jackson holds the following speech before approximately 3,000 U.S. forces personnel and their family members at Camp Zama, a U.S. army base in Tokyo, Japan: "Those of you in here today are some of the most special people in the world. It is because of you in here today, and others, who have so valiantly given their lives to protect us, that we enjoy our freedom."
In December, 2007, a song titled "Hold My Hand", by hip-hop and r’n’b singer Akon, leaks on the Internet; it would, later on, feature new added vocals by Michael Jackson in 2008, Akon declaring in an interview from July 28, 2008, that the duet was intented for peace relief purposes and was a "needed" initiative: the unification of all people "as one person, linking as one world" during the current global conflictual contexts, adding that Jackson was "fully committed" to the project, with plans of developing further ones around the song’s concept, such as a world tour. The song’s release would get shelved, though, months later, due to factors preventing an appropriate release as initially planned, among which the song's leakage, Akon explains.
Jermaine Jackson, on accepting the “2009 Save The World” Award in Austria, July, 2009, on behalf of his late brother, declares: "I'm very proud that Michael enriched the lives of so many people, not only with his music but with his immense generosity. Michael's message has always been 'Heal the world', but he alone could never have accomplished that so it is left up to every one of us to ensure that we do,”, and adds that he was a "wonderful humanitarian” whose "whole existence” was to help others and find good in every person. Others honored during the gala includes sprinter Carl Lewis, whose foundation supports underprivileged children, and Thomas Henningsen, climate policy coordinator at Greenpeace. Lewis declares on his award acceptance: "Michael Jackson inspired all of us through his music and through his message - and that's what's going to last for years and years to come. We all know the wonderful things he did for so many people and it's just great that we can continue to honor that.” The event featured live performances of a slew of Jackson songs, such as "Man in the Mirror," and "Heal the World" and an emotional rendition of "We Are The World."
On November 24, 2009, in Crenshaw, California, Jermaine Jackson, Louis Gossett, Jr., and VIP cast members from Michael Jackson’s This Is It show attended the Michael Jackson Tribute Portrait event, the largest Michael Jackson homage, created and organized by Jerry Biederman and David Ilan, in association with Maryum "May May" Ali and the organization, FAMILI, Inc. Session vocalist and backing vocalist, Ken Stacey, declared on this occasion: “Michael was all about lifting people up, so this is wonderful. Above all, Michael was a man - a man, who took his God given gifts and his dreams, honored them with a drive and determination few can match, and created for the world a gift of L.O.V.E. His art was his heart! I pray his story inspires many to reach for the heights of their own potential, and, perhaps, change the world as Michael has.” Music supervisor, Michael Bearden, adds that: “MJ loved the kids, and kids loved him. This would have been great to him. MJ was not just my boss, he was my friend. His legacy of music and L.O.V.E. will live forever in my heart and in the hearts and souls of the universe.” Jonathan Moffett, drummer from ‘This Is It, said’: “Michael would be very excited. He was a child inside and so he related very much to children. He had a great passion for kids and the youth, so I think he would be very excited about this gathering on his behalf – and mainly for the children’s’ sake, to let them have a good day celebrating his legacy.” American actor, Louis Gossett, Jr., declared that “I think he would be thrilled – anything for the children. Children need some positive input.”
“His vision and message to the world was always about helping people and he had such a big heart for the children. Watching his life, how he gave to so many charities, constantly helping underprivileged and handicapped children – he just had a really big heart. I am honored to be here to support and let his vision live on.”, American singer, Judith Hill, declares. Maryum "May May" Ali, the daughter of boxing legend Muhammad Ali, worked with Torre Reese, the director of FAMILI, Inc., to bring the Michael Jackson This Is It screening to fruition: “I think this is a wonderful event connecting kids. Michael Jackson was a young African-American boy that had passion and loved what he did. He grew up and perfected what he did. I think this is an excellent tribute to him, and a way to connect these kids with a way of encouraging them to find their passion – to become strong and committed to what they want to do in life, and to try to be the best, like Michael. It is a wonderful part of his legacy. It is great that the artwork is kind of symbolic of Michael transcending everyone and connecting to everyone. These children can be part of that by being a part of this picture. It goes full circle. Unfortunately, a legend has passed, a man has passed – someone who loved the world and children. This tribute is a great thing. For the most part, I hope the kids understand that Michael was connected and had a passion for life and for what he wanted to do. I want the children to find their passion as well”, said Ali.
In an interview, two children who walked the red carpet with some of the cast members of ‘This Is It’ discussed what Michael Jackson meant to them. One young man said: “Michael Jackson meant the world to me because I understand what he was trying to do. He was trying to make the world a better place with all the discrimination and hatred that exists. All he wanted to do was to make everyone feel equal, and the world a better place.” Another young man said: “I want to be a singer and musician when I grow up and Michael Jackson inspired me because he had his own style: the moonwalk, how he did his spins – all of that. He inspired me to go for my dreams no matter what. The media wanted to make him seem like he was a bad person and he’s not. That inspired me and I think he is a very good person.”
Jermaine Jackson, who endorsed the tribute, has this to say to the present inner city children at the event: “[…] It is so important (to come together), because this time in our life there’s so much going on in the world, and I think you, guys, are the leaders of tomorrow, which I know you are, and you can make this world a better place, so it’s important to love and stay away from the streets. […] There’s a place for tough people and bad people, so we want you to use this time to get the skills and to learn and to educate. […] Just to let you know, we’re in this world to make a difference and Michael’s blessed; at the same time, he had family, and to be born in a house the size of a 2-car garage and one bathroom, and to become the icon of the world, it tells you in life you (have to) stay focused and you want to do something in life that you, guys, have it. You have it. […] It’s okay to be square, that would save your life. It’s not important to be hip, because you’re gonna end up in the wrong circles. So, I’m saying to you that you all have an opportunity to be who you want to be. Look, we have a black President today, but not because he’s black. He was great, he is smart (…).”
On January 15, 2010, LaToya Jackson accepts the posthumous Semperorer Award for her brother’s contributions to the international pop-culture and global charity work, at an opera gala in Dresden, Germany. “I don’t know if you knew the Michael we all knew…”, she says and continues her long speech: “You know a lot about him, (but) you know that he was giving, actually, to 39 charities, but he gave us so much more than that. He gave his heart to people that he would see in the streets; people that were in the streets crying, sometimes, he would invite them to come to his house and stay for the night, until he could find a place for them to stay the following day and the day after that. So, to accept this award means so to me, to my family, to him…He’s given so much to the world, more than over 300 million dollars to different charitable events, in different charities, which is quite commendable, to give so much from such a small person, but yet, a large heart that I feel all of us should try and emulate, because it shows the goodness from this individual. His heart was so big, that none of us could possibly imagine the thought that he fought every single day. My mother and my brother and myself, we would sit down and watch television, and watch the kids starving in all the different countries, and we would sit there and cry. Michael would cry, my mother would cry, we would all cry, and he would say “What good is the crying doing for all of us? Let’s give, let’s do something about it.” And he would pick up the phone and he would say “Send them a check for a million dollars, send this one a check for a million dollars.” And he would say “Let’s go over and donate our time”. So, we’ve made the point, wherever we go, to try and visit the children who are in need, the children who are sick, the children who need love, care and attention. We’ve also made it a point at a very young age, at the age of 16 and even younger, to go the hospitals, and we would visit the elderly and feed them, and just sit there, play games. Michael and I would play games for 2, 3 or 4 hours. And I’d say “You have to go to the studio”, and he says “But you don’t. You can stay longer”. And so, I would stay longer and I would just spend my time with them. So, coming from a family, and coming from an individual who gave the way he gave, from his heart, more than anything else, I really thank all of you and I accept this award on his behalf. He’s smiling right now at us, because he knows this is what he wants, so from here, he’s smiling at all of us right now. […]”
Michael J.’s children, Prince and Paris, on accepting the Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award on behalf of their late father, at the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards in L.A., California:
“Thank you. Thank you. We are proud to be here to accept this award on behalf of our father, Michael Jackson”, Prince says. “First of all, we'd like to thank God for watching over us for these past 7 months and our grandma and grandpa for their love and support. We'd also like to thank the fans. Our father loved you so much because you were always there for him. Our father was always concerned about the planet and humanity. Through all his hard work and dedication, he has helped many charities and donated to all of them. Through all his songs, his message was simple: love. We will continue to spread his message and help the world. Thank you. We love you, daddy.” Paris continues: “Daddy was supposed to be here.... Daddy was gonna perform this year… but he couldn't perform last year… Thank you. We love you, daddy.” The event was held on January 31, 2010, in Los Angeles, California.
On March 7, 2010, sister Maureen 'Rebbie' Jackson attends the 11th Annual Children Uniting Nations Oscar Celebration in Beverly Hill, California, where brother Randy accepts the “Angel Award” on his late brother’s behalf. "When I saw his picture - that was hard, it brought tears. We miss him so much and we know you do too", Rebbie J. declares. "I got very emotional afterward. But I was very pleased and happy to be a part of this", she adds backstage. "Michael was very passionate about children and supporting their causes. Boy, he would have loved this. I'm grateful and thankful to all these people", she says. Asked on their family life, Rebbie says: "We're just trying to be a family and get ourselves through all of it - it has been so much. I'm just trying to stay positive. [...]"
On June 15, 2010, on receiving The Apollo Theater Spring Benefit Award for his late friend, comedy actor and friend, Chris Tucker, declares the following: “[…] Michael was the king, the true King of Pop. We would be walking and people started to notice that he was Michael Jackson and all of a sudden I turned into his bodyguard… Michael will live forever through us. He is, indeed, an Apollo legend. I humbly accept this award on behalf of his family and his children. Thank you very much. Love you, Mike.” Jackson was indicted that date into the Apollo Theatre Hall of Fame, the event taking place in Harlem, New York.
On June 26, 2010, a fundraising event, Forever Michael, takes place at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles, California, organized by The Jackson Family Foundation in partnership with VoicePlate Productions. “I know that Michael would be very honored and very pleased that his fans all over the world are coming together to celebrate his life,” Jackson's mother, Katherine, says in a video posted on YouTube. “And I'd also like to thank friends all over the world for the love and support that they have given me and my family this last year,” she adds. “Thank you very much, we all love you. And if Michael was here, he would say, I love you more.” Cher from MJFC Team – who participated at the event - shares that it contained an introduction by actor and former friend of Jackson's, Corey Feldman, who spoke on their friendship and briefly, also on their falling out. Feldman had previously talked negatively to the press about him after being cut down from payments the singer would provide for Feldman and his wife. The actor finished his introduction by asking Jackson for forgiveness, "a move that could possibly endear him to Jackson fans forever, or completely backfire", Cher adds. “The Council Generals of Brazil, Croatia and Kenya all gave speeches, recognizing Michael’s contributions to their countries and the world. The dignitaries’ speeches were well received and it seemed Mrs. Jackson was grateful for their words”, the MJFC Team fan writes.
Randy and Jermaine Jackson, brothers of late Michael Jackson, joined by Oscar winning actress, Beverly Todd, actor Quinton Aaron, and Island Def Jam artist, Abraham McDonald, participate at a star-studded dinner - event at Georgetown's Neyla Restaurant on July 20, 2010, on occasion of the 5th Annual Conference Of Children Uniting Nations in Washington. The Jacksons reminisced about their own family's humble beginnings, how they plan to use their upcoming tour to help children's causes, and why their brother Michael would favor their support of Children Uniting Nations. Randy Jackson declares: “[…] God has blessed us with success as a family and one thing our parents [have] always taught us [is that] we’re a family and we have to do out part in helping other families. We grew up in a house in Gary [Indiana], in a seven hundred square feet [house], [we were] nine kids and two parents, we didn’t have much, but we had a family. We had love and we had each other. So, we understand the importance of family love, which is listening to them. And that’s what our children need. So, I wanna say right here and now, that my brothers and I have been talking about our world tour and that we’re going to dedicate a certain of proceeds from that tour to help children and families all over the world. Our brother, Michael, he lived to help children. That’s what he was all about, and we want to continue that to help the many children [out] there. Okay?” Jermaine Jackson continues on to say that his family's new goal is to adopt the pro-child mission of late brother, Michael Jackson. “[…] Our whole purpose for our music has been the message to enlighten and instill the right words and principles in children, and it is really important, because children [of] today could be the leaders of tomorrow and they can make changes. So, our whole purpose in our music, in our existence is to alleviate the suffering of children anywhere in the world, that’s what’s most important. That’s why this whole situation is very important to us, that’s why we’re here and we would love to see some ground rules that are set and put in plates so we can see the difference and see the change. That’s very important”, Jackson declares. The event was sponsored by three Washington media and entertainment representatives, Greg Houston, president of PSA-DC and a senior advisor to the law firm Odell, Simms & Lynch, Lani Hay, president of Lanmark Technology, and Christine Warnke, with Hogan Lovells.
On August 15, 2010, in Saratoga Springs, New York, Michael Jackson’s brother, Marlon, attends and event inducting his late brother into the National Museum of Dance's C.V. Whitney Hall of Fame. Jackson shares some of his treasured experiences with his younger brother: “[…] I am 17 months older than Michael. And I remember when we were little kids, we used to look out the bedroom window and talk about all the ‘hood and talk about what kid of car we would have when we get older. But never once did we ever say that we’d (be) traveling the world and entertaining people. It never crossed our mind, we never thought about it.”, recounts Jackson. “But that’s what we did. God blessed us with a musical gift that we are definitely appreciative of. And we thank you all for supporting us throughout the years. One of the things that we always did when we’d travel the world is that we always visited children’s hospitals. And I remember one time… […] What we did was some of the brothers visited a certain hospital, and Michael and I, we went to this other hospital where there was a kid who had cancer, who wanted to meet is. And he was a young Caucasian kid, when we walked in, we saw him – his head was bald from the chemotherapy. But his heart was filled with life. [breaks down crying] And it does something to your heart. You can make someone happy through your music. And some get the joy because they want to meet you and spend time with you. A couple of years [after], we went back and he was no longer with us. But then we felt great and my brother felt great that God blessed us with something that we can bring to people and make them happy. And to think the kid’s last wish to meet us, and to see the joy in his eyes, the joy in his heart filled our hearts with joy as well. And as we got older, that didn’t change. Michael came up with the Heal The World Foundation, where they would purchase items for various charities and various youth centers. […] And I remember one time we went to this center and they needed our refrigerator for the kids there, and they didn’t have the funds, so we purchased the refrigerator and gave it to them. And then, the staff and everybody lit up, because it was something that couldn’t afford, but it was so easy to do for us. And then he created a place where kids can come and dream of. And that’s Neverland Ranch. […]” Backstage, Marlon Jackson answers a few questions on the inductment, winning awards and their music. “As I said back there, I’m 17 months older than Michael, we grew up as kids together and I – I miss him dearly, but, also, I know in my heart that he is with the Lord now. And he would love to be here and to receive the award that they will be giving him tonight, but I’m here to accept it on his behalf, and his spirit is with us. […] You know, we’d appreciate the awards [we used to win as a group], but we never looked forward to, you know, ‘I want this award, I want that..”, it didn’t mean anything to us. We’d just enjoy, we thought it more enjoyable traveling the Globe, making people happy. I mean, you’ll go to different countries where they didn’t speak English, but they knew your music. And they sang your songs and they’d appreciate what you did for a living. So, that made us happy. […] We did music because we enjoyed doing it, not because we’d try to make something out of it, it was just something that we enjoyed doing, and never realized the effect we had on others. […] And I appreciate that the people really appreciate our music and support us and we do not – as I stated – we do not take it for granted, we really appreciate it.”
In late February, 2010, Michael Jackson’s three children help carrying on their father’s legacy, by making a $10,000 donation to the ‘L.A. Housing Corporation’. On this occasion, their grandmother, Katherine, is also being also interviewed by ‘Good Morning America’ covering this event, the 3 children being also present. On being asked what he will do when he grows up, Prince answers, among other things: “I guess, continue what our dad was doing, like helping children from across the world and animals who couldn’t speak out for themselves.”
On August 8, 2011, Michael Jackson’s children leave personal written messages for their late father and to the children of LA’s Children’s Hospital, who (will) benefit some of the late entertainer’s sketches. “To the wonderful children and families who are loved and cared for by Children’s Hospital L.A. On behalf of our dear and greatly missed father, Michael. We love you all and wish you all to be in the best of health and have a very happy life. With love from Our family. (…)”, writes Prince on one of his father’s drawings, and also has this to say to an interviewer: "He always wanted to invest in a children's hospital, so he thinks this was the best place for the artwork to be donated and displayed." Paris’ message reads: “May the very special memory of my beautiful loving father be always in our world forever, especially through his wonderful and magical art, bringing endless happiness to children everywhere. With all my love and blessings to the kids at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. I love you, Daddy. – PARIS". Blanket’s message was: 'My father's art and music always make everyone happy. I love you, daddy.”
Michael Jackson’s son, Prince Jackson, makes an appearance at the September 23, 2011 ‘Tribute to Bambi’ Children's Gala in Berlin, Germany. He will star at an auction on November 10 in aid of the Tribute to Bambi foundation, where some of his father’s handwritten compositions will be up for sale. The boy states that, “(Charity) was something that my dad wanted to do, and I supported anything that he has ever done, and (this) is a great way to keep his legacy alive. And we brought this book that my grandma had signed, it’s a picture of, like, the Jackson 5 and my dad in it and all of that, and we would like to auction this to help the charity and have people bid on these things and the money will go to charity.” The 14-year old was also briefly interviewed by the host of the show, to whom had the following to say about his father and his own plans inspired by his father:
“I flew over to Berlin and I wish I could stay longer here to see the sights. I remember visiting Berlin/Germany in 2002 with my dad. I love Berlin. Germany is a great country. But, unfortunately, I won't have enough time to do some sightseeing. […] I remember that when he got the (Bambi) award (in 2002), he brought it in and I always wanted to play with it, because it was such a shiny little deer. But he didn't allow me to, because it was a very important award for him and he valued it a lot, as it was a recognition of his charity work. […] It just takes one voice to change the world. My dad raised his voice through his music, through songs like “change the world" or “Heal the world". Songs that made people care for our planet. […] I brought this book which was written by my Grandma, who also signed it. And I will also sign it now. And we brought the handwritten lyrics of my dad's songs, “Bad”, “Smooth Criminal” and “Billie Jean” (that will go to auction).” […] It's a pleasure!” At the close of the show, in remembrance of his father, the event’s host welcomes 30 children from the Berlin Children's Choir, who perfom “We Are The World”.