Music superstar Michael Jackson was a "pervert" and "a child molester" and the media has disgraced itself with the day-in, day-out coverage of his death, a US lawmaker has charged.
In a two-minute video posted on the YouTube Internet site, Republican Representative Peter King fumed that tributes to the late "King of Pop" honor a "low-life" while people like US troops fighting overseas are ignored.
"Let’s knock out the psychobabble. This guy was a pervert, he was a child molester, he was a pedophile. And to be giving this much coverage to him, day in and day out, what does it say about us as a country?" King said.
Jackson was acquitted in 2005 of child molestation charges.
"I really think the media has disgraced itself, I think that too many people in public life have made fools of themselves by talking about Michael Jackson as it he was some kind of hero," said King.
"There’s nothing good about this guy," the lawmaker, whose home state is New York, said in a video message recorded in front of a local chapter of the American Legion veterans’ group.
"He died, he had some talent, fine. There are people dying every day — there’s men and women dying today in Afghanistan, let’s give them the credit they deserve," he said.
"He may have been a good singer, he did some dancing. But bottom line is, would you let your child or grandchild be in the same room with Michael Jackson? What are we glorifying him for?"
In the video, King said he wished the media would honor people like teachers in rough neighborhoods, AIDS clinics volunteers, police and firefighters, and US troops serving overseas.