Beyonce’s race-baiting Super Bowl halftime show continues to boomerang on her as police boycott her upcoming concert at Marlins Park on April 26 and off-duty cops refuse to work security for her concert on April 29 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa.
Beyonce’s act at the Super Bowl performing her new song “Formation,” and the song’s accompanying video, evidenced her disrespect for police, as the video showed a line of riot-gear-clad police officers with their hands up, referring to the false narrative “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot,” and a follow shot of graffiti on the wall read, “Stop Shooting Us.” Beyonce’s Super Bowl act celebrated Malcom X and made an oblique reference to the violent, anti-police Black Panthers.
On Wednesday, Javier Ortiz, writing for the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, expressed the group’s fury, informing: “The Miami Fraternal Order of Police has voted to have all law enforcement officers boycott Beyoncé’s concert, which is being held at the Miami Marlins Stadium on Wednesday, April 26, 2016. The fact that Beyoncé used this year’s Super Bowl to divide Americans by promoting the Black Panthers and her antipolice message shows how she does not support law enforcement.”
Ortiz’s statement took Beyonce to task for the video’s reference to the death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri: “I challenge Beyoncé to review the eighty-six page report written by the United States Department of Justice on the death investigation of Michael Brown. … As detailed throughout the USDOJ report, those hands up, don’t shoot accounts are inaccurate because they are inconsistent with the physical and forensic evidence. Countless others contradicted or recanted their accounts of what transpired. Hands up, don’t shoot was built on a lie.”
Ortiz concluded with a flourish:
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. I also salute the dozens of law enforcement officers that have been assassinated by members of the Black Panthers. We ask all law enforcement labor organizations to join our boycott across the country and to boycott all of her concerts.
A request for off-duty police to work Beyonce’s Tampa concert elicited zero responses. Tampa Police Department spokesperson Steve Hegarty tried to soft-pedal the issue, telling FOX 13 News, ““We’re going to staff it because we have a responsibility to do that regardless of how controversial it might be, who the artist might be, or the politician might be. This is a couple of months away, so we’ve still got plenty of time to fill those slots.”
Tampa police could not definitively state that officers could be forced against their will to provide security or if police already on duty would be transferred to the stadium.