Barbra Streisand On Michael Jackson Allegations: “His Sexual Needs Were His Sexual Needs” [UPDATE]
Barbra Streisand has sparked controversy after voicing her opinion on the allegations against Michael Jackson in the wake of HBO’s Leaving Neverland documentary.
In a recent interview with the Evening Standard, Streisand says she “absolutely” believes that Jackson sexually abused Wade Robson and James Safechuck, but in spite of that, she appears to sympathize with the pop star.
“His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has,” she said. “You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard say [the grown-up Robson and Safechuck], they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”
Streisand goes on to say that she has “a combination of feelings” on the situation and that she blames the parents of Jackson’s alleged victims, saying, “I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him. I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him.”
Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed took to Twitter to respond to Streisand’s comments, writing, “‘It didn’t kill them,’ @BarbraStreisand, did you really say that?!”
Check out Reed’s tweet, along with other reactions to Streisand’s comments on Twitter, below.
Update (3:30pm EST): Barbra Streisand has published a new statement clarifying her recent comments about Michael Jackson. In a new statement shared with BuzzFeed News, Streisand said that she has “nothing but sympathy” for the victims of Jackson’s alleged sexual assault. Read the full statement below.
To be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone.
The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them.
The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.
An earlier version of this article originally appeared on Billboard.