“I’ve seen the messages, tags, comments and concerns and I want to respond. 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,” the 40-year-old singer wrote on Friday, February 12. “I understand that I fell short in these moments and in many others and benefited from a system that condones misogyny and racism.”
Timberlake continued, “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.”
The “Cry Me a River” crooner’s apology comes after Spears’ fans slammed Timberlake online following the release of the Framing Britney Spears documentary. The pair dated for four years, and the newly released Hulu film explores, in part, their past relationship. Timberlake’s apology directed toward Jackson comes years after he exposed her right breast during their 2004 Super Bowl halftime show.
Continuing his Instagram apology, he called the entertainment industry “flawed,” noting that it sets white men “up for success.”
“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,” Timberlake wrote. “I have not been perfect in navigating all of this throughout my career. I know this apology is a first step and doesn’t absolve the past. I want to take accountability for my own missteps in all of this as well as be part of a world that uplifts and supports. I care deeply about the wellbeing of the people I love and have loved. I can do better and I will do better.”