In hindsight over 20 years, the way we questioned women who messed about in public in the 1990s and early 2000s was embarrassing. Case in point: circa 1998 late at night, Monica Lewinsky’s blowjob yuks had enough. But in the post-#MeToo era, when she was a 22-year-old intern and her boss lied about having an affair with her scans, things were very different. Likewise, the tabloids gleefully harassing Britney Spears in her darkest days, capitalizing on the pain of her 2007 custody battle, will never happen today. That’s before we talk openly about mental health, and photos of hunted pop stars shaving their heads to regain a little bit of control look devastating in 2021.
Pop culture regularly revisits the extent of our abuse of famous women. 2017 movies I, Tonya An empathetic look at the trauma Harding endured as an Olympic figure skater from classism and years of physical and emotional abuse. recent, New York Times FX and FX on Hulu delves into the series of events that put Spears in a restrictive regulatory agency controlled by her father. Framed Britney Spears Provides legitimacy to the #FreeBritney movement that has been lobbying for her autonomy in recent years. But the documentary also underscores how comfortable powerful figures are to “smack” Spears when she is at her most vulnerable.
Framed Britney Spears Although she is one of the most gifted performers in pop music, Spears has little autonomy over her image. In the early 2000s, when reporters shamelessly asked her if she was a virgin, she shyly replied that she would wait until marriage. The documentary features her ex Justin Timberlake bragging”[getting] into her pants” on radio and covers detailHe also shamed her with the music video for “Cry Me a River,” the single that launched his solo career.
Then there were the interviewers who brought Spears to tears with their brutal questions. Diane Sawyer is getting hotter In an old ABC interview, she accused the pop star of child corruption and quoted the first lady of Maryland, who said she wished she could “shoot Britney Spears.” The star was understandably intimidated by the threat, but Sawyer went the extra mile. Disgraced former NBC host Matt Lauer labelled her a “bad mom” years later when she was photographed driving away from aggressive paparazzi with her young son. Label. In both interviews, Spears appeared to zoom out in front of the camera.
After all this reflection on how we wronged women like Spears, Craig Ferguson late night show The February 2007 monologue resurfaced and went viral, in which he promised not to make jokes about the pop star. “The kind of weekend she spends — she’s checking in and out of rehab, she’s shaving her head, getting tattoos — that’s what she’s doing this weekend. This Sunday, I’ve been sober for 15 years,” said the late night host . “But what she’s going through […] Reminds me of who I was 15 years ago when I lived like this. “
The golden rule of moral comedy was most eloquently presented by George Carlin in a 1990 interview with Larry King: “Comedy traditionally chooses those in power, those who abuse it,” A legendary stand-up comedian said. “Women, gays and immigrants are vulnerable groups in my opinion.” For context, Carlin was particularly critical of comedian Andrew Dice Clay’s jokes that belittle these groups. “I think his core audience is young white men who are threatened by these groups,” he noted. “I think a lot of these guys aren’t sure about their masculinity… [people] Those who assert themselves and are capable are a threat to these people. “
Thankfully, society has changed a lot over the past decade and changes. Social media has restored enormous power to celebrities to control their images. The way we talk about mental illness, substance abuse, misogyny and many other sensitive issues has changed dramatically. We owe Spears a huge sum of money for her role in fostering a sense of dialogue and norms struggling in the public eye. Check out Demi Lovato, who has gained popularity for being transparent about her battle with addiction. Or Selena Gomez, who last year shared her bipolar diagnosis and advocated for mental health awareness.
Spears’ next regulatory hearing is Feb. 11. Maybe it’s a long shot, but hopefully the surge in #FreeBritney support, including from stars like Sarah Jessica Parker, Miley Cyrus and Betty Midler, will be at some point affect the court. A world where goodwill dominates the discourse and Spears is free to plan his own future? Give more.