The Miami Fraternal Order of Police will boycott Beyoncé’s upcoming concert in the city over the pop star’s politically and racially charged performance at the Super Bowl halftime show earlier this month.
In a statement Wednesday, the police union said it had voted to boycott Beyoncé’s April 26 concert at the Miami Marlins Stadium over what it called the singer’s decision “to divide Americans by promoting the Black Panthers and her antipolice message” during the halftime performance.
As Breitbart’s Jerome Hudson previously reported, Beyoncé’s halftime performance featured a tribute to the militant (and often anti-law enforcement) Black Panther Party, with the singer’s African-American backup dancers clad in black leather jumpsuits and black berets. Beyoncé performed her latest single, the politically-charged “Formation,” the video of which features Black Lives Matter imagery and a shot of the singer on top of a police car submerged in water in post-Katrina New Orleans.
The halftime show dancers later posed for a photograph with fists raised in the black power salute, and a few even posed with a sign reading “Justice for Mario Woods.”
“While Beyoncé’ physically saluted the 50th anniversary of the Black Panthers movement at the Super Bowl, I salute NYPD Officer Richard Rainey, who succumbed to his injuries on February 16, 2016 from being shot by two Black Panthers who he had pulled over in a traffic stop,” Miami FOP President Javier Ortiz said in a statement.
“I also salute the dozens of law enforcement officers that have been assassinated by members of the Black Panthers,” he added.
The police union’s boycott is the latest development in the fallout from the pop star’s performance.
At a press conference on Tuesday, Tennessee sheriff Robert Arnold blamed anti-police sentiment stirred by the halftime show for a rash of police officer murders across the country over the last week.
“With everything that’s happened since the Super Bowl, with law enforcement as a whole, I think we’ve lost five to seven officers, five deputy sheriffs since the Super Bowl, that’s what I’m thinking,” Arnold, whose own home was the target of a drive-by shooting earlier this week, said. “You have Beyoncé’s video and that’s kind of bled over into other things about law enforcement.”
A planned anti-Beyoncé rally outside NFL headquarters in Manhattan on Tuesday drew just three protesters, while dozens of the singer’s supporters showed up along with several Black Lives Matter activists.
Earlier this month, Tidal, the music streaming service owned by Beyoncé’s husband Jay-Z, announced it would donate $1.5 million to Black Lives Matter and other national and local social justice organizations.
The singer has not yet commented about her halftime performance.
Beyoncé is not the only celebrity to inspire pledges of boycott from the law enforcement community this year; in October, director Quentin Tarantino angered police unions nationwide when he marched in an anti-police brutality rally in New York City, and referred to police officers as “murderers.” New York Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association president Patrick Lynch later credited a nationwide law enforcement boycott for the film’s disappointing box office receipts.