Michael Jackson is a Poster Child for Body Dysmorphic Disorder

by Marianne Richmond on June 12, 2005


I was listening to Sean Hannity “interview” Dick Gregory
today on the radio about Michael Jackson. Hannity wanted Gregory to “admit” that Michael Jackson was a pedophile.
Gregory, a longtime friend of Jackson’s allowed
that Jackson s
behavior of having sleepovers with young boys was a little out of the
mainstream but if we knew Michael like he knew Michael we would
understand…Michael was just child- like himself….not a pedophile. And his numerous plastic surgeries
to alter his appearance was about racism… similar to black people in the 1930’s
using skin bleaching products or hair straightening products to “cross” color
lines. There have been numerous such interviews with “experts” speculating on Jackson’s behavior.

Now, I know that discussions about Jackson’s behavior seem
to be something that the media thinks we want to listen to…and that as long
as there seems to be no definitive diagnosis for his behavior or
admission on his part of his guilt then the door is opened for these
speculative on-air or in-print "is he or isn’t he/did he or didn’t
he" interviews.

Well, I think it is more
definitive: Jackson clearly meets the diagnostic criteria for both pedophilia and body dysmorphic
disorder and I wonder why neither the defense nor the prosecution has made this
part of their cases or why mental health professionals are not a part of this
case. Maybe they don’t enjoy being interviewed or aren’t as entertaining as
Dick Gregory or the endless parade of celebrity lawyers.

behavior may have a racial element in that his imagined defect in appearance
seems to be his preoccupation with his skin color and nose. However, his preoccupation
with his appearance goes way beyond using skin bleaching products or hair
straightening products….

Jackson is clearly preoccupied enough with changing his appearance that he has
undergone multiple surgeries and his preoccupation clearly causes him great
distress and impairment in functioning. In other words, he has a diagnosable,
treatable disorder. His close friends and advisers who now defend him by
throwing out charges of racism and a childlike persona might have served him
better long ago by admitting his behavior was bizarre and helping him get

And one more thing….should Jackson
be acquitted because the Michael as
defense convinced the jury
that his accusers were not credible…well, we should not be surprised that these
people were not the family next door. I don’t know anyone who would let their
child have a sleep over at Neverland Ranch, do you?


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