Speaking Truth To Power – JOE JACKSON: ROOT AN ALL-AMERICAN DYNASTY by William Reed

No matter how mainstream media implies Joe Jackson should be ostracized from “proper society”, actions of the family continually contradict that view.  While a large percentage of the American population scorns “Papa Joe”, not so among the Jacksons.  Mainstream media’s publics’ rile has been up since Joe Jackson sought a $15,000 a month allowance from Michael’s estate.  Should Joseph Walter Jackson be bestowed $180,000 per annum from Michael Jackson’s estate?   Should Papa Joe be viewed as a rouge, or role-model? 

Based on traditional American values, Joe Jackson is an African-American “role-model”.  Now, a father, grandfather and great-grandfather, Joe Jackson is the root of his family’s successes.  During the Thanksgiving holiday period Papa Joe hosted third son Jermaine, and his brood, and Michael’s  children Prince, 12, Paris, 11, Blanket, 7, and ‘secret son’ Omer Bhatti at his Las Vegas ranch.  This gathering contrasted with the public’s opinion and ridicule that Joe Jackson is not entitled to a stipend from the estate of his seventh child.

Symbolically, you could say that: From this tree grew mighty oaks.  Born in Arkansas in 1929, Joe married Katherine Scruse in Gary, Indiana in 1949 and maintained his family by working as a crane operator at Gary’s U.S. Steel Company.  In the mid-1950s, Joe embarked on a music career with his brother Luther, playing guitar in a band called The Falcons.  The Falcons never got a record deal, causing Joe to return to U.S. Steel full-time after a couple of years hiatus.

Like the fathers of Andy Williams and the Williams Brothers, Donnie Osmond and the Osmond Family, it was the family patriarch’s tenacity and determination behind their children’s’, and subsequent generations’, overwhelming successes.  During the early 1960s, Joe Jackson worked two jobs to support six boys and three girls.  Michael was born in 1958, but by 1964 Joseph had discovered that the three eldest sons, Jackie, Tito and Jermaine, had musical talent.  Seeing that budding talent, Joe helped form an early incarnation of The Jackson 5 with two neighborhood youths, though eventually Marlon and Michael formed the Jackson 5.  It was under Joe’s strict leadership that the Jackson 5 polished their talents.  In 1967, they turned professional, and the group signed with Motown Records in 1968.  Much of the public’s perception of him is based on the decline in Joe’s managerial role when Motown CEO Berry Gordy took personal charge of the Jacksons’ act.

Rouge you say?  All too often Michael Joseph Jackson’s success is chronicled separate of Papa Joe.  All the family attributes Michael’s accomplishments directly to Papa Joe.  The estate has an estimated worth of $2.5 billion.  It controls billions in assets, future royalties on music rights, real estate and other holdings.  It holds the lucrative Sony/ATV catalog – which contains 250 Beatles songs, music from Elvis Pressley and Little Richard.  He still co-owned Neverland Ranch and surrounding 2,600 acres in pristine Santa Barbara County.  Michael’s MiJack music catalog is a valuable commodity. Since death, Michael’s earning power increased.  Albums that he’d previously released have gained new life and racked up 4 million new sales.

Michael had honored his father with an annual "Joseph Jackson Day" at Neverland Ranch.  Joe Jackson represents a father and authority figure most African American families never know.  In the eyes of the Jackson Family, if anyone deserves an income from the labors of Michael Jackson, it should be Papa Joe.  Now 81, Joe suffers from diabetes and contends that he was supported by Michael before his death through payments that were made to Katherine Jackson and was passed on to him.  Joe’s expenses exceed $20,000 per month; his income from Social Security is $1,700.

Mrs. Jackson’s income from the estate is four times what Joe’s requesting.  For her support, and that of Michael’s three publicly-known children, Katherine Jackson, 79, receives $86,000 a month.  Katherine supports her husband’s request for a monthly allowance.  Jermaine Jackson says it’s ridiculous that his father even had to ask for payments in the first place and states: "The fact is my father is the estate.  He created it."

(William Reed – www.BlackPressInternational.com)

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Are You Interested In the Wake County Schools Debate? Meeting Tonight

FYI for those interested in the Wake County Schools debate.

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There is quite a stir with the newly elected Board of Education and potential changes.  The YWCA is partnering with a new Board member, Keith Sutton and former Board members Beverley Clarke and Carol Parker for an educational forum and listening tour on Wednesday, December 16 from 6pm-7:30 at the YWCA on Hargett.  I’ve attached a flyer that can be forwarded widely.  It would be wonderful if you would post this in any upcoming communications and share it in whatever other formats are available.  Is that possible?

The forum will be the night after the 2nd Board of Education meeting.  As you probably know, the first meeting was very heated (and problematic) and we expect this forum to generate plenty of attention.

We’ll use this as an opportunity to explain to Southeast Raleigh parents and community members what’s at stake if the new BOE dismantles policies that have helped ensure quality education and racial/economic diversity in Wake schools.

Let me know if you have any questions.  Thanks very much for your support.

Hope you’re enjoying the holiday season.

Bridgette

Bridgette Burge

Co-Director of Racial Justice

YWCA of the Greater Triangle

4940 Capital Blvd., Suite H, Raleigh NC 27616

w) 919-828-3205 x. 16

c) 919-418-1008

bburge@ywcatriangle.org

www.ywcatriangle.org

J Ronald White, President
South Central Wake County NAACP

See related:

Wake County Public Schools

State ranks No. 4 in school suspensions

Only three other states suspend a higher percentage of their students each year, according to the National Center of Education Statistics. Suspensions are particularly high in the Triangle. Wake County, which educates 9 percent of the state’s public school students, accounts for 20 percent of all long-term suspensions. In the 2007-2008 school year, the latest for which statewide statistics are available, Wake handled more than 1,100 long-term suspensions. (Read more @ News & Observer)