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Saturday, November 28, 2020

Opinion

Possible son of Michael Jackson crawls from woodwork


Michael Jackson’s brood could be expanding with new claims that the late singer fathered another child aside from Michael Joseph Jackson Jr., Paris-Michael Katherine Jackson and Prince Michael “Blanket” Jackson.

Brandon Howard, a 33-year-old singer, has an alleged 99.9 percent DNA match to the King of Pop. While one could dismiss this as just another fame-monger coming out of the woodwork to claim stardom, Howard’s circumstance could be quite different.

His mother, a famous songbird from the ’80s, supposedly had the nickname “Billy” around that time. If the hit song “Billie Jean” has a deeper meaning, Howard could be expected to garner even more attention than he already has.

The lyrics are curiously specific, calling a woman by name “Billie Jean,” and referencing a little boy, “the kid is not my son,” which makes one wonder where Jackson found his inspiration.

In the late ’80s, Miki “Billy” Howard was a popular R&B and jazz singer represented by Joe Jackson, Michael’s father. She is said to have known Michael in the early ’80s, just before Brandon Howard was born in 1982 and a year before “Billie Jean” was released.

The online television channel FilmOn.TV first revealed the story when Alkiviades David, the site’s owner and Greek heir to the Coca-Cola fortune, had a suspicion of Brandon Howard’s relation to Jackson. David then claimed to have obtained the pop star’s dental impression from Dr. Joseph Goodman, a Beverly Hills dentist, and tested it to compare it with Howard’s DNA. Despite the sample being 30 years old, David believes it still retained Jackson’s DNA.

But before the results were released, Howard took to social media to clarify that he did not consent to his DNA being used in such a manner.

“It’s true I had a DNA test,” Howard said. “But this had nothing to do with any of this, I swear on my life.”

Howard’s father, Augie Johnson, who was a backup singer on Jackson’s 1979 album “Off the Wall,” strictly denies any romantic involvement between Miki Howard and Jackson before Brandon’s birth.

“She didn’t even know Michael at that time,” Augie told TMZ.

“I know Brandon’s my son.”

Johnson also revealed that Brandon Howard did know Jackson as a child, having taken him to the superstar’s “Neverland” home, where he played with the Jackson children. Calling their friendship with the Jacksons an “entertainment relationship,” Johnson believes the scrutiny around his son’s paternity to be the work of “greedy people.”

Howard Weitzman, the Jackson estate lawyer, spoke out against the evidence.

“It sounds like fraud to me,” he said.

In the midst of the controversy, Scott Broomfield — Howard’s manager — released a statement on behalf of the 31-year-old.

“To this day, I have never claimed to be Michael Jackson’s son nor do I have any intention of pursuing the family’s estate,” according to the statement.

Even so, the resemblance between Howard and the “Thriller” singer is quite astonishing. It is so striking that new claims have now arisen that if Michael Jackson is not Howard’s father, then Joe Jackson, patriarch of the Jackson family, could be.

Considering the longstanding suspicion surrounding the paternity of Michael Jackson’s three children, the truth may never be revealed as to whom Jackson truly fathered.

Despite this, Howard seems content with his own path — no doubt brightened by his name being linked to Jackson’s. He relayed to his fans on Facebook.

“Wherever you guys go from here … make sure everybody knows this is me.”

Opinion columnist Alex Meyer is a creative writing freshman and may be reached at [email protected] 

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