Since it’s a requirement that any reference to
repeat violent offender “beloved Michael Jackson impersonator” Jordan Neely be paired with the real-life entertainer, it’s the perfect time to revisit a prescient observation by one of Jackson’s close associates.
In a 2015 interview with “The MJ Cast” podcast, Kerry Anderson, the late singer’s director of security, lamented the unseemly way that the news media covered his former boss. “The power of the media is amazing,” said Anderson. “They can take a person like a Michael Jackson who was a person of morals, scruples, and values and demonize him into being some kind of satanic child molester. And then you can take a person that’s a recidivist, that’s a convicted murderer, more than once, and they go to prison, and because they find the lord or whatever, and they start writing children’s books, they get nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.”
It’s not a particularly unique insight these days. The media turning good and well-intentioned people into monsters while glorifying the worst among us is standard business practice (See entry “George Floyd” and “Dr. Fauci”). And that is precisely what they have done with Neely and what they will do to Daniel Penny.
Penny has been charged with manslaughter after he subdued Neely in a headlock on the subway. Witnesses said at the time that Neely had been behaving belligerently when he boarded the train, terrifying passengers trapped with him inside the car as he screamed about being ready to go to jail and ready to die.
White liberals in the media who get chauffeured to and from the TV studio: What’s the problem, racist?! He danced like Michael Jackson!
On the one hand, you have Neely, a mentally unwell vagrant with a lengthy criminal record that includes the assault of multiple women and elderly victims. On the other hand, Penny, a 24-year-old twice-deployed Marine with no criminal history, who a friend described as “fun and goofy and never harmed anyone.” (Furthermore, it’s a crime in its own right that not enough has been said about how good-looking Penny is.)
Media do your thing!
The New York Times on Sunday found a random “ex-Marine” to trash Penny as unbecoming of the military: “I don’t think what he did was OK, and I don’t think it’s in line with anything the Marine Corps teaches.”
As for Neely, a May 7 article in the Times quoted a former “classmate” who said, “Everyone called him Michael Jackson.”
The hero who halted an insane person is defamed in the paper as a dishonorable veteran by someone who didn’t even know him, while the ne’er-do-well is fondly recalled as a tickle-some moonwalker. (Literally; a separate article in the Times last week described Neely in the author’s own words as “a gifted Michael Jackson impersonator who captivated commuters with his fluent moonwalking.”)
The entire affair isn’t so different from what happened to Kyle Rittenhouse, the young adult who was acquitted of murder in 2021 after he fought off a rabid mob trying to hunt him down because he dared to defend private property from BLM rioters. Like Penny, Rittenhouse was protecting the innocent. The media torched his reputation just the same.
As his journey through the justice system proceeds, best of luck to Daniel Penny, the well-liked serviceman.
Hey, do you know who else had a deep appreciation for the U.S. military?
“Those of you in the room today are some of the most special people in the world,” Michael Jackson said during a 2007 visit to Camp Zama in Japan. “When we all sleep at night, we rest comfortably knowing that we are protected. And it is because of you here today, and others who so valiantly have given their lives to protect us, that we enjoy our freedom.”