This is the headline you will read all day and probably tomorrow. That, after leaving Janet Jackson for dead after the Super Bowl in 2004, Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson actually “made peace”. Those aren’t the words that come of out his mouth though. Those are the words that Zane Lowe put in his mouth, to which he replies, “Absolutely”. And then he goes on to say that:
“And I don’t know that a lot of people know that. I don’t think it’s my job to do that because you value the relationships that you do have with people.”
So, like, it was just a secret that he kept, you know? Out of respect for Janet, he didn’t want to go around talking about how they worked it out. OUT OF RESPECT FOR JANET.
This f-cking guy.
Here. Watch. And then we’ll sh-t on him some more.
How do you “make peace” with someone while watching them get blacklisted, get maligned, their career in the dump for years, as you go on to win awards and make more money? Where is the peace? At no point did Justin Timberlake, when Janet Jackson went from being one of the top entertainers in the business to showbiz pariah, step up and stand in solidarity. Solidarity is peace. Selfishness is not peace.
And to suggest that it happened but that he never revealed it publicly because he “values the relationships” he has with people is not just insulting, what’s worse is that he’s done it again – once again he’s hung her out to dry. Because if Janet comes out to challenge his revisionist version of the story and call him a liar, she’s the one whose looking for a fight. She’s the angry black woman looking for a fight. She’s the angry black woman looking to pick a fight with the soft-spoken Make America Great Again Man Of The Woods sitting in the studio during an interview spewing platitude after platitude for the MiniVan Majority.
“You can’t change what’s happened but you can move forward and learn from it” – that’s a platitude and that’s how Justin Timberlake speaks. It means nothing. Jack sh-t. Because what, exactly, did he learn?
Learning, in this case, would be an acknowledgment: I failed her, I was more concerned for myself, I let her eat most if not all the blame, and, looking back, and understanding, especially historically, how women, and black women in particular are not treated equally, I leaned into my privilege – and this is not OK.
Which… is not at all what he said. All he does is mention his “stumbles”? STUMBLES?
Stumbling is reading out the wrong name on an envelope. What he did wasn’t a stumble, it was an abandonment and then an exploitation. A complete betrayal. Justin Timberlake PROFITED from that situation. You can’t write that off by simply calling it a stumble.
But they’ll let him, won’t they?
Goddamn it, they always do. He always, always floats through. Already he’s floating. Already the way they’re telling this story is HIS version of the story – and not hers. Already and again, Justin Timberlake is owning and controlling the narrative about what happened between him and Janet. As he has done from the very beginning. And now that his version is out there, whatever she has to say will either be a forced corroboration or yet ANOTHER risk SHE will have to assume because he f-cking put her there. Where’s the respect and the “valuing of relationships” when you’re always the one who gets to dictate the relationship?