Unless you’ve been self-isolating a little too hard (or binned off social media for the sake of your sanity), you’ve seen the recent attention to the #FreeBritney movement and the documentary that sparked it.
Let’s catch up about what we know, why it happened and what we can do to get Y2k’s real queen her freedom back.
First things first, we stand with Britney Spears.
Fact to make you gasp in ‘oh my God I’m broke’: As of 2018, Britney Spears had a net worth of $59 million dollars.
Fact to make you gasp in, well, horror: She hasn’t had control of that fortune for 13 years.
Why? Britney’s under a conservatorship – for those of us who don't read up about legislative law in our depleting free time, a conservatorship is ordered when somebody is deemed unfit to care for themselves. In this case, the breaking point was Britney Spears’ ‘breakdown’ – or as pop culture told it: ‘the Britney 07 moment.’
Her father has complete control of her life and her money since, and she has to cover the fees for it. Yes - that does mean she pays to be a prisoner. No - she doesn’t have the power to stop it.
Would this have happened to a man?
Quick answer: no.
Britney Spears’ father and a court system built upon structural misogyny decided she was a woman who had lost her mind when in fact, she had lost her patience.
Her life up until that point was a series of sexist WTF moments caused by the media's exploitative nature and headline-over-health mentality (anyone shocked or surprised?). From talk show host to paparazzi, men raked in the dollar from her success, and when she couldn’t take the exploitation anymore, those same men hit the jackpot.
And they still do. Britney still works. She still makes millions. She just sees none of it.
Believe women. Credit women. Allow women their basic f*cking rights.
The recent documentary closes with Britney bagging a (small but starting point) win, with her conservatorship now split in power between her dad and a representative of her choice. this was fuelled by the support, pressure and media attention the #FreeBritney movement brought. Which is exactly why we need to keep saying those two words until they have no weight.