Jackson family torn apart over Leaving Neverland detailing alleged child sexual abuse

Photo: Leaving Neverland/HBO/Channel 4
Photo: Leaving Neverland/HBO/Channel 4

Following the release of Leaving Neverland – the explosive documentary detailing allegations of child sexual abuse against Michael Jackson – many members of the Jackson family have come out to defend the late singer’s legacy, denying all the allegations.

However, one member of the family who has chosen to stay silent is Janet Jackson, and many of the other Jacksons are reportedly not happy about it.

The 52-year-old is arguably the most high profile member of the family, after Michael, but has chosen to stay silent in order to keep her career “separate” from the scandal surrounding her late brother, according to The Sun.

But her silence is apparently tearing the family apart.

“In the past week there have been discussions among the Jacksons about the documentary and how it will affect Michael’s legacy,” a source told the outlet.

“Everyone wanted Janet to release a statement condemning the documentary because she is the most senior member of the family after Michael.”

Janet with her brother in 1993. Source: Getty
Janet with her brother in 1993. Source: Getty

Certain members of the Jackson family have apparently been putting “pressure” on Janet to speak out, however, her decision to stay silent on the matter is one she’s “always” made.

“Ultimately, she doesn’t know what went on and doesn’t feel like it’s her place to say anything,” the source added.

It may be a wise choice given that the ‘Rhythm Nation’ singer is set to take up her 15-date Las Vegas residency in May.

The Jackson Family at MJ’s memorial service in 2009. Source: Getty
The Jackson Family at MJ’s memorial service in 2009. Source: Getty

The documentary has sparked some serious debate amongst viewers, with many die-hard Michael Jackson fans claiming the documentary is very one-sided.

While the three-hour documentary is certainly a compelling, and in some parts extremely difficult watch, there are some key aspects missing, including testimonials from Jackson’s former staff members, other young boys Jackson was associated with, his own family, and the lengthy FBI investigation into the child molestation allegations.

Because of these omissions, Jackson’s family, as well as many fans, have continually labelled Leaving Neverland “one-sided” and “biased”.

However the director, Dan Reed, has argued such omissions needed to be made in order to be able to focus on the specific stories of accusers James Safechuck and Wade Robson.

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