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Here’s Why Britney Spears Shaved Her Head All Those Years Ago

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There has been a lot of ink spilled about Britney Spears and the way the media treated her during her very public mental breakdown that lead to her current conservatorship. The one thing I haven’t seen nearly enough is “South Park was right,” even though basically everyone takes the stance now that only South Park took at the time, which is that the way the media covered Britney was gross.

Britney’s New Look mixed the media’s coverage of Britney with the short story The Lottery, which details a town in modern America (at the time) that practices human sacrifice in order to ensure a good harvest. The basic message is the only reason to treat a human being the way we treated Britney Spears is to drive them to their death.

It’s not entirely insane to think that we as a society would enjoy this, by the way: when Shirley Jackson first wrote The Lottery in 1948, most of the letters she received about it were asking where the lottery is held so they can go and watch. They thought it was real and didn’t want to stop it, they wanted to watch someone be stoned to death.

It turns out that Parker and Stone were also right about the cause of Britney’s actual new look. In the cartoon, she shoots herself in the head after Cartman and the crew claim to be Britney’s children because she’s distraught that they aren’t. She’s also upset that the paparazzi aren’t going to leave her alone, but let’s give South Park some credit here.

As it turns out, Britney’s ex-husband not letting her see her kids was the incident that lead to her shaving her head.

Here’s what The Daily Mirror reported about the new information that’s surfaced about the incident.

Her request was reportedly refused, and the angry and frustrated star apparently then drove to a random hair salon and asked hairdresser Esther Tognozz to shave her head in front of more than 70 members of the paparazzi.

Tognozz tried to talk her out of it, but once her back was turned, Britney grabbed the clippers and sheared her locks herself.

What’s really interesting is Britney’s reasoning. Here’s what Emily Wynne-Hughes said about her discussion with Britney about it at the time. Wynne-Hughes tattoo studio was Britney’s next stop after the hairdresser.

“I noticed her hair was gone. I remember asking her, ‘why do you shave your head?’ And her answer was a bit weird,” the tattooist says.

“It was, you know, ‘I just don’t want anybody, anybody touching my head. I don’t want anyone touching my hair. I’m sick of people touching my hair.'”

That should be chillingly familiar to anyone who knows someone who perhaps developed an eating disorder as a way to deal with trauma: wanting to be in control of something. She could shave her head and no one could stop her, and she felt like she wasn’t in control of anything so she needed to do something, anything to feel just a modicum of control.

That’s what was going on in Britney Spears’ head when she shaved her head, and the only people who had any empathy for her here were Craig Ferguson and Matt Parker and Trey Stone.

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