Will.i.am says the allegations made against Michael Jackson are part of a “racist smear campaign.”
The “Scream and Shout” hitmaker has branded the claims made by James Safechuck and Wade Robson in the HBO documentary Leaving Neverland, where they say that Jackson sexually abused both of them after befriending them when they were children, as part of a “smear campaign” against the singer.
He said: “I don’t know what to trust or who to believe. Who is behind it or what? Obviously, it’s money. All I know is it’s a smear campaign. If he did it, then it’s sad and inhumane. But if he didn’t, then what is happening is sad and inhumane.”
Will.i.am worked with Jackson before his passing and praised him for being a “genuine and big-hearted person.”
He added: “The Michael Jackson I loved I will always love. The person I met was the kindest and most genuine and big-hearted person, who wouldn’t hurt a fly.”
Some have called for Jackson’s music to be banned in the wake of the allegations but Will.i.am has fumed at this, likening it to “not doing anything with anyone who ever did anything ill in the past?”
Speaking at Elstree studios, he shared: “We live in a very, very, very, very hypocritical, double-standard, fake society. I can name a thousand other products that we still buy, still use, that are owned by folks that have done the most horrendous things to people, millions of them, and we don’t take their products from the market. You’re not talking about banning Bayer that made the chemicals to kill all the Jews. You’re not talking about real s—, and yet you want to flex on a song? Bayer is really responsible for chemicals that killed millions of people but they’re headache medicine now.
“Are you going to ridicule them for their past? Are there reparations that need to be done for that? Imagine every country that ever had slaves. People said never travel to those countries because of what they’ve done in the past. Are you not supposed to do anything with anyone who ever did anything ill in the past?”
The Michael Jackson estate has hit back at the allegations made by James and Wade, branding both accusers “perjurers” and “admitted liars.”