Hobbling on crutches but abandoning (temporarily, perhaps) his trademark glove, Michael Jackson delivered a tearful speech on the stage of Oxford University's venerable debating chamber on Tuesday night, when he introduced a children's bill of rights, reports Reuters. The bill would ensure that parents read bedtime stories to their sons and daughters and make them feel loved. The crutches were because of a broken right foot Jackson, 42, suffered last week. The tears were because Jackson spoke of the difficulty of growing up under the spotlight of stardom. "My father is a tough man, and he pushed my brothers and me hard, from the earliest age, to be the best performers we could be," Jackson said from the stage. "I wanted more than anything else to be a typical little boy . . . to build tree houses, have water balloon fights and play hide and seek with my friends. But fate had it otherwise." Jackson's appearance was to promote his "Heal the Kids" charity, a cause that has raised some eyebrows. In 1993, the parents of a 12-year-old boy accused Jackson of sexually molesting their son. Jackson denied any wrongdoing, no criminal charges were ever filed, and the pop star settled the matter out of court for an undisclosed sum.
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