Popular Music and Cultural Impact

Course Project

Rasmussen College

Popular Music and Cultural Impact

For this project I chose Michael Jackson “They Don’t Care About Us” released on March 31, 1996. This song was about human rights abuses which it was the most controversial pieces he composed. This song was a top ten in all European countries and number one in Germany for three weeks. It was very popular song that even Bosnian singer “Dino Merlin- Jednom kad sve ovo bude juce” “stole this song from Jackson and later on paid huge fee for it.

When Michael Jackson went to New York from Gary, Indiana quickly he became one of the most recognizable human being on the planet. He had amazing voice, inspired dance move, dictated fashion trends and raised awareness for social cause around the globe. Michael Jackson was known all over the world and many people suffered and still do after his death. He connected the world where everybody knew about American culture. With this song he connected American culture with Afro-Brazilian because he shot a video in Brazil for this song. Michael Jackson “Forced black families to debate issues surrounding individualism and race, so his cultural impact here extended beyond simply the music.” Michael Jackson had impact on Indian Bollywood where dancers were trying to dance well as he used to dance. “Actors, established choreographers, aspiring composers, kids in dance shows everybody borrowed ideas,” says British-born hip-hop star Hard Kaur, now a Bollywood star.

This song has multiple meanings which few of them are: racism, stereotypes, the government not caring about regular people, the illuminati (people think) and there are a few signs in that video including the all seeing eye and he does the devil sign at one stage, and himself, people not caring about him. The Illuminati offered Michael Jackson the chance to join them, but he denied joining, that is why they created all of the false rumors about him. If you refuse to join the Iluminati you are as good as dead. The Illuminati control everything, the music industry, film industry, pharmaceutical (legal industry), medical industry, colleges, banking institutions, Wall Street and the Political System in the US.

“While Jackson has stated that “They Don’t Care About Us” the controversy surrounding the usage of the terms “Jew” and “kike” on history that the singer was impelled to issue multiple public apologies and explications, such as the one with which this essay begins, and to return to the recording studio to replace the offending articles with “chew” and “hike” respectively. (At least this is how the lyrics appear in the publicly available musical score; on the record, the precarious words are obscured by sonically arresting flashes of electronic “interference.”“They Don’t Care About Us”: Michael Jackson’s Black Nationalism, Rossiter (2012).

Michael Jackson was always proud of his heritage, where many of people, especially African Americans felt he betrayed own people because his skin was lighter due to vitiligo. Symolism of his songs and videos were being proud to be black and that he was deeply committed to his race fighting the cause of social injustice, racial and social equality for people of all races and religions. Also, his songs were symbolic because of his talent and genius work he never talked about.

This song speaks out about all the people who suffer discrimination. He was showing anger at people being judgmental and highlights some clear issues such as segregation. Also, Michael Jackson addresses the issues that are clearly about him (Don’t you Black or White me) where his skin color is always questioned.

“The song in fact is about the pain of prejudice and hate and is a way to draw attention to social and political problems. I am the voice of the accused and the attacked. I am the voice of everyone. I am the skinhead, I am the Jew, I am the black man, I am the white man. I am not the one who was attacking. It is about the injustices to young people and how the system can wrongfully accuse them. I am angry and outraged that I could be so misinterpreted.” New York Times.

In 1995 All sides in the affirmative action debate say that they believe in the Constitutional right to equality regarding race, creed and sex, but they bring very different interpretations to what that means. Michael Jackson used this song to say more about slavery, racism and being neglected for all African American people for many, many years not just in this period when song was released.


In New Lyrics, Jackson Uses Slurs, (WEINRAUB, 1995) retrieved from


Social, Political and Economic Issues in America, retrieved from


They Don’t Care About Us”: Michael Jackson’s Black Nationalism, Rossiter (2012).