Thursday, 16 July 2009

They don't care about us - Michael Jackson

'They don't care about us' was released as the fourth single from Michael Jackson's album 'History'. The song attracted a lot of critiism for its lyric, which includes the line 'Jew me, sue me, everybody do me / Kick me, kike me, don't you black or white me'. The word 'kike' is an offensive term referring to a jew. Jackson responded to the allegations of antisemitism several times in the American media, commenting: 'The song in fact is about the pain of prejudice and hate and is a way to draw attention to social and political problems. I am the voice of the accused and the attacked. I am the voice of everyone. I am the skinhead, I am the Jew, I am the black man, I am the white man. I am not the one who was attacking. It is about the injustices to young people and how the system can wrongfully accuse them. I am angry and outraged that I could be so misinterpreted.'

In the end, the song was censored. In this single version, the words 'Jew me sue me' are replaced with 'Sue me sue me' and the words 'Kick me, kike me' are replaced with 'Kick me, kick me'. There's also a different censored version in which the offensive words are replaced by loud sounds.

This vinyl single was an utter surprise to me. As far as I knew, 'You are not alone' was the last Jackson single from 'History' released on vinyl. This copy has no picture sleeve, but it does have a 'normal' label (something which is omitted from later 'jukebox' releases). The single, meanwhile, reached number 4 in the UK singles chart and the Dutch Top 40, and number 30 in the US Billboard Hot 100.

My collection: 7" single no. 3851
Found: eBay.co.uk, received July 15, 2009
Cost: 3 pounds
Tracks: 'They don't care about us (LP edit)' / 'They don'tcare about us (Love to Infinity's Walk in the Park radio mix)'

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