ARTS + ENTERTAINMENT

Utahns show support for Britney Spears in #FreeBritney rally

Jul 15, 2021, 7:01 AM | Updated: Jul 16, 2021, 8:42 pm

Utah Britney Spears...

#FreeBritney rally at the Utah State Capitol building. [Photo Credit: Lindsay Aerts, KSL NewsRadio]

SALT LAKE CITY — Utahns have joined thousands of groups around the country to show support for pop star Britney Spears who of late had been speaking out about a years-long conservatorship that keeps her from controlling much of her life. On Wednesday,  dozens of people who support Spears’ effort gathered at the State Capitol in a #FreeBritney rally. 

Utah Britney Spears rally 

Utah Britney Spears

Britney Spears rally at the Utah State Capitol.
[Photo Credit: Lindsay Aerts, KSL NewsRadio]

According to KSL TV, multiple speakers called on Utah’s senators to do something to end conservatorship abuse. Shannon Egan, founder of Free Britney Utah and rally organizer, said that this was the first of many rallies worldwide until Spears is freed from her conservatorship.

The crowd at the capitol hugged and danced and sang together, united by their love for the pop star and their hope that she can live a peaceful life.

Egan declared Spears’ case a violation of human rights, and called it “specifically a women’s rights issue.”

“Not only am I a fan, but I’m a woman,” she said. “If a man were to get up with an umbrella and shave his head, I doubt he would have been stripped of his rights.”

Psarah Johnson, board chairwoman of the Disabled Rights Action Committee, also spoke to the crowd, comparing Spears’ conservatorship situation to those sometimes faced by disabled people. Johnson said most people are largely unaware of these typ s of circumstances.

“I’m so glad people are seeing this now and realizing how wrong it is,” she said. 

Britney Spears in a conservatorship agreement 

Utah Britney Spears

#FreeBritney rally at the Utah State Capitol building. [Photo Credit: Lindsay Aerts, KSL NewsRadio]

Spears’s career has been in the hands of legal guardians in an arrangement known as a conservatorship since 2008 when she exhibited a very public mental health crisis.

The court-ordered agreement gave her father, Jamie Spears, control over her estate and other aspects of her life. Now, the singer is asking to dismiss her father from this role to regain control of her life. 

According to CNN, Spears said in a court hearing that she wants her father out as the co-conservator of her estate. She also wants him charged with abuse. 

“I want to press charges against my father today,” Spears told the court by phone, breaking down in tears at times. “I want an investigation into my dad.”

Samuel D. Ingram had been Spears’ court-appointed lawyer since 2008. Last week, Ingham submitted his petition to resign after Spears criticized his representation. 

On Wednesday, the judge accepted Ingham’s resignation and Spears has retained former federal prosecutor Mathew Rosengart as her new counsel. 

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Utahns show support for Britney Spears in #FreeBritney rally