After gaining fame in September 2007 from the viral video “Leave Britney Alone!” Chris Crocker has made headlines after Britney Spears addressed her conservatorship case. The 14-year-old video in which Crocker tearfully defended Spears’ comeback performance at the MTV Video Music Awards resurfaced after people took social media to say the internet celebrity was right the whole time.
Chris Crocker was on the right side of history pic.twitter.com/eCLcTq0Syy— kelsey mckinney (@mckinneykelsey) June 24, 2021
Although Crocker received over four million views in two days, gained international media attention and a lot of criticism, they said this is not about them, but the living pop legend and her freedom. “Keep the energy on BRITNEY‘s voice being HEARD,” he posted on Instagram, asking people to stop mentioning his name in the case.
According to Crocker, whose real name is Christopher Darren Cunningham, the message wasn’t well-received, even from the LGBTQ+ community. Now they are suffering from Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and are afraid that remembering the traumatizing experiences triggers any symptoms.
“I was already taking hits from the LGBT community saying I was an embarrassment for crying over a celebrity, and I was feminine and gender-expressive at the time, which wasn’t accepted,” he explained. “But I felt like; I’m taking all these hits, some physical at gay bars, and the person I made this about doesn’t like me,” they said, referring to tabloids releasing stories about Spears hating the viral video.
“Britney doesn’t owe me or anyone anything,” they said. “So even if she thought I was weird or didn’t like the video, that’s her prerogative. Literally, I might have thought I was weird, too.”
According to Crocker, they don’t consider themself as the best Britney Spears’ stan. “We’ve all made mistakes,” they said. “Hopefully, now as a society, we’re all able to be aware of where things are at. That’s what’s important. Not trying to retroactively clap for me or persecute other people, okay? The point is we’ve all gotten to a point where we see what the f--- is going on.”
“This woman has given us enough. She never had to give us anything. All of the art and entertainment and performances and brilliance that she’s given us through her art, and just an inspiration for years,” they continued. “For that alone, she doesn’t owe us anything and just deserves to be free and happy.”
The 33-year-old Tennesee native said they simply shared how they were feeling at the time. “I made the ‘Leave Britney Alone’ video because I felt like people should leave [her] alone,” they concluded. “And I feel like now, hopefully, the conservatorship ends, and she can live her life the way she f------ wants to live it.”
They also used the video to mirror the situations they were living at home. “I was trying to fight for my other family members to still believe in [my mom],” they said. “I was begging them to give my mom a chance, and so there was a parallel in my life, that sort of tension of why I was defensive over a misunderstood woman because my mom had me at 14 years old, you know, and she was very misunderstood. And I, in some ways, felt like I had to protect my mom and fight for her.”
In a recent interview with NPR, Crocker opened up and said that it wasn’t funny even though people started making fun of them. “I always felt that if people just read the transcript and didn’t pay attention to how I looked or that I was screaming and just read what I said, there’s nothing comical about it,” Crocker told the publication. “Like I was listing the fact that Britney had lost her aunt. She was going through a divorce. She just had kids and, you know, I was scared she had post-partum [depression] or something. Like there was nothing funny about anything I was saying.”
“I think no one now can argue with what I said — they just didn’t like the messenger.”
“Still, to this day, people still make memes and make fun of that video,” Crocker said. “So I’ve had to really realize it’s not about me, it’s just about how society gets really uncomfortable with the truth that they’re not willing to accept from the messenger. I think no one now can argue with what I said — they just didn’t like the messenger.”