Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Britney Spears and the "suicide note"

The Sun has big, chunky story this morning - a world exclusive, no less - as a "friend" of Britney shares what the paper calls a 'suicide note' written by Britney Spears.

It's not, actually, a suicide note - just using the phrase "perhaps it would be better if I was dead" doesn't make something a suicide note; the letter, if genuine, is distressing enough as a glimpse into Spears' mental turmoil without the need for ramping it up by suggesting that Spears tried to kill herself. The source of the note doesn't say anything that suggests they believe it was a farewell letter; the paper can only offer an oblique hint to try and stack up the headline:

Britney’s suicide note was found in her bathroom just before her meltdown earlier this month, in which she was rushed to a psychiatric ward after refusing to hand her sons to Federline’s security guards.

"Just before" is a bit vague - presumably a period of time actually greater than the "on the evening of" that's being suggested.

I'm not clear on mental health law in California: is there a local equivalent of sectioning?