Regardless of the rumors, assumptions and whatever any future DNA tests may reveal, Michael Jackson was Prince, Paris and Blanket’s daddy. All the gossip about whether the children are “real” Jacksons or whether they deserve to inherit MJ’s fortune is cruel and unnecessary.
Their father is dead, the latest estate drama sounds like fodder for a daytime soap opera and now their big cousin TJ is their new guardian. The last thing they need is a nosy public questioning their paternity…again. As soon as the kids came into the world and it was clear that they were not young-Michael-Jackson-brown, the chatter began and it has never really gone away. If you have ever watched an episode of Maury, you know that you can’t definitively determine paternity by skin color, hair texture or even facial features.
Regardless of that, being a dad is not about blood, as many blended families can attest to. MJ had three kids and that’s the end of the story: but now that his estate is in turmoil, the issue of whether or not the Jackson kids are “real” Jacksons has returned to the forefront once again. Le sigh.
Teenagers Prince and Paris (15 and 14 respectively) have both done what a lot of teenagers do when dramatic events happen in their lives—they tweeted about it. The gossip blogs immediately erupted into a chorus digitally finger wagging at Paris and how she needs to step away from Twitter and stop airing family business. Grainy security video even surfaced that allegedly showed Aunt Janet Jackson trying to pry Paris’ cellphone from her nimble little fingers.
It’s comforting that Paris is doing something normal teenagers do. For years, the public was and continues to be concerned with how normal the Jackson kids are, especially in the days of hiding from the press via masks and blankets. Today, Paris seems to be a bold, angst-ridden teen, just like her contemporaries.
Should she and her brother tweet about private family issues? Probably not, but just imagine if Twitter had existed when Janet Jackson was a teenager. When Ms. Jackson was a teen, she was secretly marrying James DeBarge and recording her Control album. The title song featured lyrics like “Got my own mind/I wanna make my own decisions/When it has to do with my life, my life/I wanna be the one in control.” If that’s not a teenage/young adult angst anthem, I don’t know what is.
If Twitter had been around during those days when Janet Jackson was bumping heads with her family about her career and coming to terms with her annulled teen marriage, I think JJ would have had a lot more to say than the little nuggets Prince and Paris are offering up in 140 characters.
Thirty-four-year-old cousin TJ, the newly minted temporary guardian of the Jackson kids, might have a better handle on how to deal with the social media issues. He doesn’t have the considerable generation gap that separates his aunts and uncles from his little cousins.
So yes, the Jackson kids have a lot of uncertainty in their lives right now in terms of alleged grandma kidnapping, new guardianship and over-sharing on Twitter, but what they don’t have to question is who their father was. They called Michael Jackson Dad, he cared for them as a father would and provided for them in his will. Hopefully, the adults in the lives of Prince, Paris and Blanket can stop forming diabolical plots against one another and figure out what is truly best for the kids.
Follow Demetria Irwin on Twitter at @Love_Is_Dope.