The Death of Michael Jackson

By: Maddie Jennings

Background Information

Michael Jackson, the "King of Pop", was reported dead on June 25, 2009 at he age of 50. An unknown doctor, later identified as Doctor Murray, called 911, from Michael's Los Angeles mansion. The call was made at 12:21 in the afternoon, and the unknown caller stated that he was unconscious and not breathing. They were able to identify that the caller was Doctor Murray because he was the only person in the room, with Michael, at the time of his death. He said that he had been performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation, but he was unable to bring him back to life, leading to his death at 2:26 PM. The autopsy was taken the next day, on June 26, 2009. It was released that Jackson had been taking Oxycontin daily, but had also been injected with Demerol by his doctor just a half an hour before Jackson went into cardiac arrest.

What Happened to Michael

People seem to believe that the death of Michael Jackson was caused by his doctor, Doctor Murray. As the New York Times reported, "The cause of Mr. Jackson's death was a mixture of the powerful anesthetic Propofol and the anti-anxiety drug Lorazepam." These drugs were given to Michael by Doctor Murray. On the other hand, some believe that Michael overdosed, himself, on his medicine. CNN reports that Michael did indeed inject himself with the medicine that lead to his fatal death.

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Is Michael Jackson still alive?

There are many different beliefs about Michael Jackson's death. One news story questions if Michael Jackson is still alive, claiming that his death was a hoax to escape his financial struggles. They point out certain characteristics that add to the belief, such as the fact that Michael Jackson loved to wear disguises and use different voices to prank people. It is even said that he stuck a mannequin in the back of the ambulance to trick the media.

Media Biases

The New York Times uses bias by labeling by referring to Michael as a "sad figure" and criticizing him. They used irrelevant information such as the fact that he had many "failed plastic surgeries". The New York Times article also included bias by spin by only including one interpretation of how Michael Jackson died, which was that Doctor Murray was guilty, but did not state the other side.

CNN's coverage of Michael Jackson's death uses bias by placement. They intrigued the readers by making the title of their article "Michael Jackson Gave Himself Fatal Overdose, Expert Says". The article starts out by including what the expert believes to have happened, and especially focuses on saying that Michael did it to himself, instead of stating the other view points, as well.

Historical Criticism

Historical criticism was the most apparent while reading these articles. The articles cover Michael Jackson's life. They even go all the way back to Michael infamous drug addiction problems in 1984. The article from revealed that Jackson admitted to being addicted to pain medication, in 1984, during a Pepsi commercial. Michael also admitted to child molestation that he said led to him continuing his drug use. He stated that the drugs helped him to get through his tour. These things influence people's interpretation of the issue by leading people to think that Michael overdosed without Doctor Murray having any knowledge of what Michael was taking. With previous knowledge of Michael being a drug abuser, it is hard to rule out the idea of Michael overdosing on his own.


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