Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake at Crossroads premiere in 2002

Justin Timberlake Further Proves Britney Spears Had Nothing To Apologize For

Britney Spears recently issued an apology that seemed to be directed at her ex-boyfriend Justin Timberlake for what she wrote about him in her memoir, while also offering praise for his new song, “Selfish.” She was already under no obligation to apologize, but Timberlake’s unnecessary and nasty response further proves she absolutely shouldn’t have apologized.

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Spears and Timberlake dated from 1999 to 2002, but their decades-old relationship recently came back into the spotlight after Spears released her memoir The Woman in Me. Her memoir tells a powerful and emotional story as she gets candid about her rise to stardom, living in the public eye, navigating relationships, and fighting to free herself from a 14-year conservatorship. What especially caught readers’ attention was what she said was the truth behind her early relationship with Timberlake.

A year after their breakup, Timberlake wrote “Cry Me a River,” which insinuated Spears had cheated on him. In her book, Spears told her side of the story, which didn’t paint Timberlake in a positive light. She alleged that he had pushed her to have an abortion and then strummed his guitar at her while she cried in the bathroom after the procedure. Additionally, she alleged he was the one who cheated on her before he changed the narrative against her in “Cry Me a River.”

Naturally, Timberlake has received a lot of backlash for his alleged treatment of Spears. Fans even found a unique way to troll him by streaming Spears’ 2011 song “Selfish” instead of Timerlake’s latest song, which is also titled “Selfish.” This resulted in Spears apologizing for any offense her book may have caused and hyping up Timberlake’s new song.

Instead of appreciating an apology he didn’t deserve, Timberlake issued a nasty response at a recent concert of his.

Justin Timberlake shades Britney Spears at concert

Justin Timberlake at the 70th Emmy Awards
(Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty)

While Timberlake has not publicly responded to Spears’ memoir, he has been accused of throwing shade at her, especially as he continues to perform “Cry Me a River.” However, he took things a step further while performing in New York City on January 31. A concert-goer confirmed to People that, at one point, Timberlake stopped to speak to the crowd, saying, “I’d like to take this opportunity to apologize to absolutely f***ing nobody,” before immediately launching into a performance of “Cry Me a River.”

Even before he did this, it was concerning that Spears apologized. While she has received some support, she has also received stiff backlash for her memoir from those who dislike that a woman is telling her story. However, it’s high time that people feel more outrage toward the man who treated a woman terribly than at the woman for exposing him. Women should be able to tell their stories unapologetically, and if a man doesn’t want a woman talking about what he did, perhaps he just shouldn’t have done it. So Timerbalke was receiving an unnecessary apology that he truly didn’t deserve nor earn, and this is how he responds?

He didn’t need to respond or apologize if he didn’t want to. However, instead of saying nothing, he decided to take the fact that Spears apologized to him and mock her over it, reminding everyone that he’ll never apologize for what he did, including continuing to sing his slut-shaming song. His statement essentially bragged about feeling no remorse for his actions and confirmed that he has not grown or changed in the past 20+ years. After all this time, he still can’t resist the need to attack a woman he has already hurt in the past. Why would he so gleefully advertise that to the world?

Spears deleted her initial apology shortly after Timberlake’s statement surfaced. She also posted a now-deleted statement to Instagram noting she was “not sorry !!!” after she heard “someone was talking shit about” her. All Timberlake’s outburst did was further prove why women shouldn’t apologize to men for telling their stories. Even as women are bizarrely being pushed into apologizing for simply telling their truth, at the same time, men are openly refusing to apologize for any ill-treatment of women whatsoever. If men genuinely aren’t uncomfortable or remorseful at all when confronted by their past actions, then why should women be told they have to apologize for talking about those actions?

(featured image: Kevin Winter / Getty)

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Rachel Ulatowski
Rachel Ulatowski is a Staff Writer for The Mary Sue, who frequently covers DC, Marvel, Star Wars, literature, and celebrity news. She has over three years of experience in the digital media and entertainment industry, and her works can also be found on Screen Rant, JustWatch, and Tell-Tale TV. She enjoys running, reading, snarking on YouTube personalities, and working on her future novel when she's not writing professionally. You can find more of her writing on Twitter at @RachelUlatowski.