Streisand shared her thoughts with the Times in the U.K. ahead of her July concert at London’s Hyde Park. Given that Streisand is one of the few people alive to have experienced a level of stardom similar to Jackson’s, interviewer Ed Potton asked about her thoughts on “Leaving Neverland.”
The EGOT-winning singer says that she believes Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who allege in the documentary that they were abused by Jackson as children. “Oh absolutely,” she said in the interview. “That was too painful.”
Streisand says that on the occasions she met Jackson, he was “very sweet, very childlike.” But despite the material being painful to watch, she seems to have some sympathy for the late pop star. “His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has,” she told the Times.
“You can say ‘molested,’ but those children, as you heard them say [the grown-up Robson and Safechuk], they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them.”
When asked if she’s angry with Jackson, she replies, “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 shows and the dancing and the hats?”
Streisand goes on to talk about the Me Too movement, calling it “very powerful.” But she says, “Unfortunately, it’s going to cause a lot of women not being hired because men are worried they’ll be attacked.” The interviewer explains that she seems to mean that the men will be worried about being accused of sexual impropriety.
The outspoken diva says her most recent album “Walls” is her most political ever. Although it doesn’t mention Donald Trump by name, Streisand is strongly anti-Trump and many of the songs revolve around themes like “Don’t Lie to Me.”
Streisand’s comments prompted negative reactions online, with some questioning Streisand’s remarks and others, like Michael McKean, joking that it’s “Barbra’s turn in the barrel.”