Michael Jackson: A Look Back At His Animal and Planet Activism

An article about Michael Jackson's artistic contributions to the subjects of animal abuse and planet conservation. Click here to learn more about his conservation efforts.

Michael Jackson had a deep love and interest for animals and the planet.  Michael's Neverland Ranch was filled with domestic and exotic animals within the gates. During the 1980's one of Michael favorite pets, was Bubbles the chimpanzee. He was Michael's constant pet of choice even appearing in videos like "Liberian Girl" and "Leave Me Alone." As he aged, Bubbles became aggressive and Michael chose to give him to an animal sanctuary in California. He has been living in the Center for Great Apes in Florida, since 2004.

Michael also seemed to have a great love or interest in cats domestic and wild in nature. There are numerous pictures of Michael as a child and young adult with kittens. This love for cats also materialized in his videos as well. Domestic and wild cats were featured in Jackson's videos like "Billie Jean" and "Remember the Time." In Michael's short film, "Black or White" a panther was featured as It was revealed that the panther was Michael causing him to break into that controversial panther dance that was censored in the film for some time. The outtalks photos for the infamous "Thriller" album included the singer holding a tiger cub. Michael's love for animals found its way within his art.

Jackson's self-penned songs were featured in the film, "Free Willy" and the film's subsequent sequel. The film's main purpose was for animal conservation and giving the killer wale, Keiko a more suitable environment to live. Jackson's care for animals and the planet continued to serve as inspiration for his art. In 1995, Michael Jackson released the single "Earth Song." The song's video features the breakdown of the planet including several pieces of footage that features animal abuse. "Earth Song" is Michael's biggest selling single in the UK, and the singer received the Genesis award for positive attention given to animal rights.

2009's "This Is It concert documentary features a pivotal short film where a young girl helps to illustrate planet and animal conservation. The same year "The Grammy's" had an Earth Song tribute to Michael with help from artists like Celine Dion, Carrie Underwood, Usher, Jennifer Hudson, and Smokey Robinson.

Michael Jackson's legacy will include several layers but his love for animals and concern for the conservation of the planet will be remembered by his fans and music critics alike.



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Susan Kaul
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