The Ultimate Cleanser

So at some point during this week, Ed Mcmahon, Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jacksonhave all passed away. As I get older, it’s sadly true that more and more people die. It used to be at award ceremonies when they would pay tribute to those who had passed away since last year’s ceremony, I really didn’t know too many of the individuals, but now each year, I am familiar with an increasing number.

It’s interesting what people have to say about their lives and their deaths. There are an uncountable number of posts on the web by people talking about the greatness of Michael Jackson and what he’s meant to their lives, but they omit the accusations and the negatives. Which is understandable to some degree, you want to remember the good things about a person when they pass away and in some ways dwell on them. But you have to admit in the case of Michael Jackson, some of the things that he has been accused of just can’t be ignored. But because of an early, tragic death, we as a society can overlook the  negatives. If he had lived to an old age, society probably wouldn’t be as forgiving as they are now.

Why is it we as a society see an early tragic death as a sort of cleanser, strong enough to erase any negative things that that person may have done in their lifetimes? What is it that convinces us to look the other way? And why do we allow some people’s legacies to be sanitized and others not. What is the dividing line between what can be cleansed and what can’t?

I don’t really expect any answers to those questions now or ever. Just simply musing out loud. And please don’t take this as an attack on anyone or anyone’s legacy.

One response to “The Ultimate Cleanser

  1. Perhaps because an early, tragic death erases any chance for redemption, at least on Earth. Perhaps we look the other way because we don’t feel it’s right to say something negative about someone who isn’t present to defend him- or herself. Perhaps some ppl’s legacies are sanitized because they brought great joy to many ppl, and as for the bad things, well, one can always say, “Didn’t happen to me…” I don’t know. I’m just speculating.

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