Barbra Streisand Says She’s ‘Profoundly Sorry’ For Comments About Michael Jackson Accusers
The 76-year-old singer clarified her comments in a statement to People, saying, "there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of." She added that Wade Robson and James Safechuck's stories "were painful to hear," adding, "I feel nothing but sympathy."
"The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children," she continued in her statement. "It's clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy."
Streisand added, "I am profoundly sorry for any pain or misunderstanding I caused by not choosing my words more carefully about Michael Jackson and his victims, because the words printed do not reflect my true feelings. I didn't mean to dismiss the trauma these boys experienced in any way. Like all survivors of sexual assault, they will have to carry this for the rest of their lives. I feel deep remorse and I hope that James and Wade know that I truly respect and admire them for speaking their truth."
Her apology comes after The Times of London shared an interview with the singer, in which she said she "absolutely" believed Robson and Safechuck's accounts in HBO's two-part documentary, Leaving Neverland. She said in the interview, "His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has."
"You can say 'molested' but those children, as you heard say, they were thrilled to be there," she told the outlet, adding, "They both married and they both have children, so it didn't kill them."
Streisand went on to say, "It's a combination of feelings. 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. Why would Michael need these little children dressed like him and in the shoes and the dancing and the hats?"
Her comments drew a lot of attention online. Leaving Neverland director Dan Reed tweeted, "'It didn't kill them' @BarbraStreisand did you really say that?! #LeavingNeverland." Streisand didn't respond.