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anne_mikolay_120Michael Jackson's musical contributions, and his unrivaled performance skills, cannot be denied.  He was, without doubt, an icon, the undisputed King of Pop. I am saddened that he has passed away, saddened that his life was, in some ways, tragic. I am even more saddened by the media frenzy that surrounds the man's death.

Note to the media: please, just let Michael Jackson go.

That's not to say that Michael Jackson doesn't deserve to be honored. He most definitely does. The public outpouring of affection and admiration since his passing has not been seen for a public figure since the death of Princess Diana. And just as they did when the beloved Princess died in Paris, the media is insensitively picking Michael Jackson apart bit by bit.

When a celebrity dies, vultures descend, and "experts" crawl out of the woodwork to grab their fifteen minutes of fame. Yes, the public wants to know the cause of Jackson's death, but his death need not be analyzed on television and in the press by countless physicians who never even met the man. Why must plastic surgeons, who have never been within ten miles of Neverland Ranch, conduct facial comparisons on the nightly news to "determine" the true parentage of Jackson's children? Does the public really need to hear the thoughts of the caretaker who looked after Jackson's animals at Neverland Ranch? Why are other  celebrities, who may not have seen Michael Jackson in months, or even years, compelled to "share their grief" with newscasters? All we have been hearing since Michael Jackson passed away is the personal opinion of people who would honor Michael Jackson far more if they kept their mouths shut.

Case in point: the nurse on Jackson's staff who shared with the media her story of the singer "begging for drugs." Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't a medical professional bound by patient confidentiality? The nurse's violation of a professional code of ethics is far more troubling than Michael Jackson's alleged request for medication to help him sleep. Shall we ask this nurse how much she was paid for her tale? Sadly, in death, as in life, Michael Jackson is a walking dollar sign to many. I know that "money talks," but how someone could sell a photo of a dying man to a tabloid for $500,000 is beyond me. Obviously, money trumps conscience.

Michael Jackson lived a privileged life shrouded in eccentricity and mystery, but is it necessary to pick the man apart, to speculate about every aspect of his private life, including the parentage of his children? His children will someday (if they haven't already) hear all of this; the media will definitely have a hand in the resulting emotional struggles. The children are being overlooked at a time when their well-being should be paramount. The media coverage of Michael Jackson's death is shameful, shady journalism.

Michael Jackson was an icon. He was the King of Pop. He was many things, but regardless of what you thought of him, and the way he lived his life, he was a father, a son, a brother, a human being. As such, he deserves a death with dignity.

Please, just let Michael Jackson go.