Image Source: WireImage
Another movement has sparked once more in the country, and this time it’s to free beloved pop star Britney Spears from a conservatorship ruling made to give her father, Jamie, full control of her estate and life.
The movement by the pop icon’s fans has gained momentum one more time as an anonymous lawyer, who claims to be part of the group that oversaw Spears’ conservatorship, went on an episode of the Britney’s Gram podcast to express his concerns over the debilitating control that Britney’s camp and father have over her life.
A conservatorship is a court ruling that gives a ward or guardian complete control over another person’s decisions, life, and estate when it’s proven that they can no longer function normally. This ruling came upon Britney back in 2008, following a report of her mental illnesses weighing down considerably on her. However, this isn’t the first time this ruling received backlash from the public. Back in 2009, a website called FreeBritney.Net went live and demanded courts remove the singer and actress’ conservatorship and give her back the control she once had over her career and life choices.
“During the twelve years of Spears’ conservatorship, she has repeatedly toured the world, released multiple albums, and worked on a variety of television shows,” the site stated. “Her conservators decide whether or not she works, as she cannot enter into contracts for herself because she is legally not her own person. Britney Spears needs permission from her conservators to leave her house or spend any of her own money.”
Britney’s father, Jamie Spears, has complete control over Britney’s professional and personal affairs. He manages all of the star’s work and earnings, and sets terms that control even the aspects of her life that have little to do with her entertainment career. For example, one report shows that Britney currently has an IUD that prevents her from having children and cannot get it removed given the terms of her conservatorship.
The seemingly unjust terms placed on the entertainment legend started back in 2008 after a court-appointed advocate named Samuel Ingham claimed Spears could not retain her counsel after a fifteen-minute discussion with her. In one cover story, one writer commented, saying that Britney seemed “highly functional” at that time, contrary to claims made by her conservator’s lawyers that she was “gravely disabled.”
Other stars like Mariah Carey, Tinashe, and Megan McCain have also expressed their support to Britney Spears. Another musical artist, Liz Phair, even tweeted on the matter, saying, “[It’s the] oldest trick in the playbook of the patriarchy: declare a woman mad and gain control of her assets [and] property. [It’s] been happening for centuries.”
Spears spoke publicly for the first time since 2008 about her desire to end the conservatorship and gain more control of her decisions in one virtual court appearance. When speaking to a Los Angeles judge, she noted all the freedoms that she has been deprived of even on a day-to-day basis and the financial exploitation that has happened over several years. Britney likened her current situation to “sex trafficking” in an official statement.
Fans continue to share sympathy and call out the seeming injustice placed on the star by starting petitions and campaigns that have made the hashtag #FreeBritney viral. The tag has currently been used over 200,000 times this year on Twitter alone.