UPDATED 3/23, 3:20 p.m. ET: Following backlash, Barbra Streisand clarified her stance through a statement.
“To be crystal clear, there is no situation or circumstance where it is OK for the innocence of children to be taken advantage of by anyone,” she said, according to the Washington Post. “The stories these two young men shared were painful to hear, and I feel nothing but sympathy for them. The single most important role of being a parent is to protect their children. It’s clear that the parents of the two young men were also victimized and seduced by fame and fantasy.”
See original story below.
Though Streisand said that she "absolutely" believes the child sexual abuse claims made by Robson and Safechuck, the singer, songwriter, and actress also said that the abuse "didn’t kill them."
"His sexual needs were his sexual needs, coming from whatever childhood he has or whatever DNA he has," Streisand said of Jackson. "You can say 'molested' but those children, as you heard [Robson and Safechuck] say, they were thrilled to be there. They both married and they both have children, so it didn’t kill them," Streisand continued.
When asked how she felt about Jackson in light of the abuse claims, Streisand responded: "It’s a combination of feelings. I feel bad for the children. I feel bad for him." The Funny Girl actress also placed blame on the parents. "I blame, I guess, the parents, who would allow their children to sleep with him," she remarked.
Streisand's comments on Jackson come on the heels of the release of HBO's Leaving Neverland documentary. The doc examines Robson and Safechuck's claims that they were sexually abused by the late pop star.
Shortly after the interview with Streisand was published, people took to Twitter to express their outrage at her comments.
Dan Reed, the director of Leaving Neverland, also took to Twitter to respond.
Read other reactions below.
Barbra Streisand's comments on Michael Jackson's accusers are ... outrageous and perplexing to say the very least. pic.twitter.com/eFSTZUu4bz— Alexander W. McCall (@awmccall) March 22, 2019
It is with the heaviest of hearts that I cancel Barbra Streisand. https://t.co/h5mmHhKZN4— Alan Henry (@AlanHenry) March 23, 2019
barbra streisand has lost her entire goddamned mind. here she is talking about michael jackson and his victims pic.twitter.com/nOs4ruK9Q2— endora bullshit (@collectdust) March 22, 2019