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Friday, February 26, 2021

Justin Timberlake apologises to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson, says ‘I know I failed’

In a lengthy social media post, Justin Timberlake says that he wants to apologize to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson because "I care for and respect these women and I know I failed".

By: AP | New York |
February 13, 2021 9:14:44 am
justin timberlakeJustin Timberlake has apologised to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson in a social media post. (Photo: Instagram/JustinTimberlake)

Justin Timberlake has apologised to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson in a lengthy post, saying he cared and respected for the two women and “I know I failed.” His apology came after a new documentary led to criticism of how he treated Britney during their relationship.

“I’ve seen the messages, tags, comments, and concerns and I want to respond. I am deeply sorry for the times in my life where my actions contributed to the problem, where I spoke out of turn, or did not speak up for what was right. I understand that I fell short in these moments and in many others and benefited from a system that condones misogyny and racism,” he wrote Friday.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Justin Timberlake (@justintimberlake)

Timberlake’s social media post comes a week after the release of The New York Times’ documentary Framing Britney Spears, the FX and Hulu film that takes a historical look at the circumstances that led to Spears’ conservatorship in 2008 and highlights the #FreeBritney movement of fans who want to see her released from it and given control of her life. The documentary aired an old interview when Timberlake spoke about sleeping with his former girlfriend and indicated that he ridiculed her by hiring a lookalike for his Cry Me a River music video.

Fans called out Timberlake for contributing to Spears’ very public breakdown and controlling the narrative about the end of their relationship.

More backlash hit Timberlake as social media began to recall the wardrobe malfunction with Jackson that caused a national controversy at the 2004 Super Bowl. Some argued that Jackson, as a Black woman, fell victim to a racist and sexist double standard and received harsher treatment than Timberlake, as a white man, did and that he benefited from “white male privilege.”

And the NFL’s decision to invite Timberlake to perform at the halftime show three years ago triggered a backlash from women, minorities and others who felt Jackson was unfairly forced to pay a far higher price than Timberlake. “I also feel compelled to respond, in part, because everyone involved deserves better and most importantly, because this is a larger conversation that I wholeheartedly want to be part of and grow from,” he wrote. “The industry is flawed. It sets men, especially white men, up for success. It’s designed this way. As a man in a privileged position I have to be vocal about this. Because of my ignorance, I didn’t recognize it for all that it was while it was happening in my own life but I do not want to ever benefit from others being pulled down again.”

The #FreeBritney hashtag has trended heavily last week, with celebrities backing Spears, including Paris Hilton, Miley Cyrus, Bette Midler and more. “I have not been perfect in navigating all of this throughout my career. I know this apology is a first step and doesn’t absolve the past. I want to take accountability for my own missteps in all of this as well as be part of a world that uplifts and supports,” Timberlake wrote. “I care deeply about the wellbeing of the people I love and have loved. I can do better and I will do better.”

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