The music and film industry has been divided in the wake of HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary. While some have turned their backs on the late Michael Jackson amid resurfaced allegations of child abuse, others are stepping forward to defend his legacy. In a new interview, Will.i.am appeared to support Jackson.
The Black Eyed Peas artist made a reference to the Holocaust in an attempt to highlight the hypocrisy in “muting” MJ.
“We live in a very, very, very, very hypocritical, double-standard, fake society,” he said, according to the Evening Standard. “I can name a thousand other products that we still buy, still use, that are owned by folks that have done the most horrendous things to people, millions of them, and we don’t take their products from the market.”
Will.i.am attributed that double standard to the continued support and use of Germany pharmaceutical company Bayer’s over-the-counter medicine that was originally used “to kill all the Jews.”
“Bayer is really responsible for chemicals that killed millions of people but they’re headache medicine now. Are you going to ridicule them for their past?” He continued, “Imagine every country that ever had slaves, people said never travel to those countries because of what they’ve done in the past. Are you not supposed to do anything with anyone who ever did anything ill in the past? England, Spain, Portugal. That’s not that long ago. Are there reparations for everyone who’s done something ill? I could name a thousand more ills that are worse but we’re going to pull songs?”
While Will.i.am insisted that he had known Jackson to be a kind and gentle person, he suggested he was also uncertain of Jackson’s innocence. “I’m torn because that’s not the Michael Jackson I loved and will always love,” he said. “It is a smear campaign, there’s been a number of smear campaigns in the past. If he did it, it’s sad and inhumane. If he didn’t, what’s happening is sad, and inhumane.”