I am a 90’s baby that grew up in the early 2000’s. Back when I was a kid, I didn’t know how much media had an effect on me. I can say I was heavily influenced by the misogyny and double-standards of the 2000s. I was taught that Paris Hilton was a ditsy blonde slut for having been 19 having sex on camera with a 33 year old musician and having that sex tape go viral. I was taught that the teen girls on Maury were crazy and slutty for having sex with grown men. I was taught that Britney Spears was just being wild and reckless. I was taught that the harsh treatment of Janet Jackson was exposed nipple at the 2003 Super Bowl was justified. That it was okay for her career to be ruined by it. I was taught that those teenaged girls that R-Kelly preyed upon knew what they were doing. Even at 15, I was taught girls Like Amanda Todd “deserved to kill herself” because she showed her breasts on camera. I was taught that I shouldn’t have any sympathy for these women and girls.
However, I wasn’t taught the double standards of it. We never asked why Maury wasn’t exposing the pedophiles that were having sex with these little girls. Also, How come there was never any segments on wild teen boys? I can recall a few episodes but most of the time the focus was on teen girls. How come we let R-Kelly go free and still held him in high regard years after that sex tape with a 14-year-old girl went in the mainstream? How come we never took into account Britney Spears’s mental State? How come we often joked about rape and took sexual harassment as a regular thing that doesn’t need attention? Why did we Chastise famous women like Whitney Houston and Courtney Love for their drug addictions but thought men like thought men like Russell Brand and Robert Downey Jr. needed sympathy?
Almost 20 years too late Justin Timberlake finally addressed and admitted fault to Janet Jackson and Britney Spears in light of the 2021 Documentary, “Framing Britney Spears”, which described in great detail how much of a misogynistic jerk Justin Timberlake was to pop star and how he contributed to her mental breakdown. He also was spared criticism for being the one that exposed Janet Jackson’s boob while Jackson’s Career was scarred from that incident. He has also done other things that should’ve got him cancelled a long time ago.
With all the talk over social media about early 2000’s and it’s treatment toward famous women, I can finally say that the 2000’s have reached it’s day of reckoning. Now, we can’t go back to the past and change what had happened. We can’t change the attitudes we felt during that moment in time. However, we must realize that there will be more leaked sex tapes, there will be more exposed nude photos, there will be more men trying to defame or shame women we see in the limelight. Our response is that we should start holding more men accountable for their treatment toward women. We should start canceling and exposing the men and women who put out nudes and sex videos without the person’s consent. To the women who think “that can never be me”, you should show more solidarity to the women being humiliated online because if it can happen to her, it can happen to you too.