When you hear the name Justin Timberlake, one can’t help but reflect on the longevity of his phenomenal career. From his beginnings as an 11-year-old country singer appearing on one of television’s original talent competition shows “Star Search” to his days on “The All-New Mickey Mouse Club”, this mega mogul revolutionized the entertainment industry.
Amid his massive famed success with group sensation NSYNC, Justin became known for his lead-soulful vocals, urban-like flair and, amorous relationship with fellow teen-bopper star Britney Spears.
The two former Mouseketeers were in a three-year involvement that ended tumultuously after accusations of Spears’s infidelities leaked throughout media via Timberlake’s fiery track “Cry Me A River” resulting in a blasphemous feud, turning Justin’s clean-cut image into racy status.
After parting ways with the boyish band, Justin catapulted in his solo path creating endless chart-blazing hits and collaborating with some of biggest names in the music business. But in 2004, his Super Bowl XXXVIII half-time performance with the incomparable Janet Jackson would become a pivoting moment for years to come.
Now, after the recent airing of the Britney Spear’s documentary, “Framing Britney Spears”, the husband of actress Jessica Biel and father of two, who’s been under adverse scrutiny for his role in the Spears break-up, took to Instagram yesterday publicly apologizing to both Jackson and Spears while voicing his sentiments on social and racial injustices.
“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”.
“I specifically want to apologize to Britney Spears and Janet Jackson both individually, because I care for and respect these women and I know I failed. 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..”
In total transparency, he continued to state, “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”.
His stance speaks unprecedented volumes as sporting luminaries San Antonio Spurs President/head coach Greg Popovich and former NBA player now Brooklyn Nets head coach Steve Nash shared similar sentiments of white privilege.
Its liberating yet daunting that not more are candidly utilizing their platforms to verbalize these daily biases that we as minorities have faced for decades and continue to be subjected to although, our resilience is the ultimate motivator that withstands our determination.