Joy Reid Calls Out 'Toxic System' of Conservatorship After Britney Testimony (Video)
“You don’t have to be rich and famous like Brittany to get caught up in a system that strips your legal and your financial rights,” Reid says
Joy Reid Britney Spears MSNBC
MSNBC anchor and host of “The ReidOut” Joy Reid joined the legions of people publicly voicing their support for Britney Spears after the pop star testified she is in an “abusive” conservatorship that she’s fought for years to end.
Reid’s nightly focus of The Absolute Worst bit was the abuse of conservatorships, and she noted that Spears’ very public fight is forcing people to examine the underlying issues with legal conservatorships. Reid called it “a toxic system in need of reform.”
“You’ve heard by now of the pop star making a rare appearance in open court in California yesterday, asking a judge to end a 13-year court ordered conservatorship allowing her father Jamie to control her money and her personal life,” Reid said about Spears. “In the hearing Spears says that she wanted her life back, saying it was doing more harm than good.”
Reid pointed out that while Britney Spears is certainly the most prominent person involved in a conservatorship abuse case right now, there are roughly 1.3 million people in the U.S. under similar legal agreements. The MSNBC host also noted that MarketWatch recently reported that adult guardianship or conservatorships control at least $50 billion in assets; noting, “some are handled by people who are certainly abusive, if not doing things that are illegal.”
“(Spears) told the court investigator the conservatorship had become an oppressive and controlling tool against her,” Reid noted. “The court ordered the conservatorship back in 2008, following a very public breakdown, but under the arrangement, Brittany can choose her own attorney so the attorney isn’t working for her… and you don’t have to be rich and famous like Brittany to get caught up in a system that strips your legal and your financial rights,” Reid pointed out.
The issue of conservatorship is a key plot point in the J Blakeson-directed dark comedy “I Care a Lot” starring Rosamund Pike and Peter Dinklage — while fictional, Pike’s character Marla Grayson is an abusive con woman who uses a fake guardianship business to sell off the assets of elderly wards and profit.
Reid didn’t mention this film specifically but pointed out that plenty of these types of scenarios happen in real life. Typically, conservatorships are used with the intention of helping an elderly, disabled or mentally impaired person take care of their affairs.
“Most of those adults are elderly or disabled persons creating situations ripe for abuse; there have been cases of firms specializing in guardianship embezzling fortunes, in one way or in Florida, putting Do Not Resuscitate order on an elderly man even though he said he wanted to live,” Reid said. “Conservatorships can be dissolved in a court and a 2018 senate aging committee report found that courts often fail to protect those individuals and call for greater oversight.”
Reid is far from the only anchor to comment on this issue; both CNN’s Don Lemon and Chris Cuomo discussed the issue on live TV last night and countless people have voiced support for Spears — including “The View” co-host Meghan McCain, who called for the FBI to investigate her case calling it “a human trafficking issue.
Spears recently said in an open court hearing that she’s been forced to take medication against her will. She also said her reproductive rights were infringed by her “so-called team” who wouldn’t let her go to the doctor to remove and IUD.
In addition to saying she wanted but was prevented from having another child, Spears also revealed she was forced by her father James “Jamie” Spears into an almost inhumanly busy schedule of touring — even forced to perform with a 104-degree fever — on a level she compared to “sex trafficking.”
“I’m so angry, it’s insane,” Spears testified. “I just want my life back.”
Take a look at Reid’s full remarks on Spears’ toxic (we’re pretty sure that pun was intended) legal battle below.
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