La Toya Jackson's Strange, Confusing 'Today' Interview (VIDEO)
It's been at least a month since La Toya Jackson became the only contestant on the 'Celebrity Apprentice' to be fired, re-hired and then promptly re-fired. Anxious to return to the spotlight, Jackson sat down with Matt Lauer Monday on 'Today' (7 AM ET, weekdays on NBC) for a bizarre interview filled with confusing statements and contradictions that gave off more smoke than fire.
Jackson was there to talk about her recent book 'Starting Over,' in which she claims to investigate Michael's death and identify his true killer. In the book, she posits that Michael's death was a conspiracy and that Dr. Conrad Murray is merely a fall guy. But when Matt Lauer pressed her on why the book doesn't name anyone or offer any evidence about that, Jackson could only respond with a hollow, "If you read the book you'll understand."
The conversation then moved on to other controversial Jackson family issues, and the confusion continued. Does she stand by the statements she made during Michael's child-molestation trial, in which she said she could no longer stand idly by as her brother was harming innocent children? No, she doesn't: She claimed her then-husband Jack Gordon forced her to say that, threatening that he would kill Michael if she didn't call him a child molester. Got that? Okay ...
Lauer then asked Jackson if she stands by more salacious claims she's made in the past, that her father Joe Jackson was physically and sexually abusive toward her. She responded strangely, something about how cultural norms have changed: "Parents beat their children back then ... If they do that today, they go to jail ... My father's a wonderful person and always will be. He has a great heart."
These are all sensitive, personal issues that have undoubtedly caused Jackson a great deal of pain, but we can't help but wonder if she might be better sorting them out in private, perhaps with the help of a mental health professional rather than in front of cameras on national TV. Unfortunately, that's never been the Jackson family way.