Sunday 25 February 2018

Christina Patterson: Jackson died trying to recreate the childhood and family he lost

When the verdict was announced, his sister shrieked. She sent a tweet to her 125,000 followers saying "VICTORY", and ended it with seven exclamation marks. His fans waved their banners praising Jesus, and screamed, and wept, and blew horns. People said, while crying in front of cameras, that there had, at long last, been what their banners had demanded: "Justice for Michael!". His mother agreed. "I feel," she told reporters, "better now."

Everyone seemed to. Everyone -- apart, perhaps, from Conrad Murray, and his defence lawyers, and maybe some of the women who claimed to be his girlfriend, and maybe some of the mothers of some of his children -- seemed to feel an awful lot better now. They seemed to think that although nothing could bring back the man they claimed to love so much, this was a very, very happy day. They seemed to feel like Michael Jackson's mother, who couldn't wait "to go home and share this day" with his children, and "couldn't hold back tears of joy".

Everyone seemed to think that what had been a tragedy wasn't any more. Because a man who was paid €116,000 a month to give him the kind of drugs you can't pick up at Boots, had given him an awful lot of the kind of drugs you can't pick up at Boots, and been so careless about it that he'd been chatting on the phone to a cocktail waitress while the man he was meant to be looking after was having a bad reaction to a drug you definitely can't pick up at Boots, had been found guilty of killing him by accident.

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