Beyoncé is taking swipes at police officers across America who called for a boycott of her “Formation World Tour” in response to the singer’s tribute to the Black Panthers and the anti-police Black Lives Matter movement during her Super Bowl 50 halftime show.
The pop star’s decision to sell “Boycott Beyoncé” merchandise, including T-shirts, cellphone cases, and hats, is Beyoncé’s latest slap in the face of law enforcement.
— USA TODAY Life (@usatodaylife) April 28, 2016
Capitalism at its funniest! Beyoncé selling her own Boycott Beyoncé shirts, trolling critics and "protesters"😂 pic.twitter.com/2PaXTRwfYm
— Juliana Jai Bolden (@JulianaJai) April 27, 2016
— POPSUGAR (@POPSUGAR) April 27, 2016
After Beyoncé’s anti-police Super Bowl performance — of which former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani said the singer “used as a platform to attack police officers” — the hashtag #BoycottBeyoncé began trending on social media.
Beyoncé also enraged the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, who urged its officers to boycott Beyoncé’s world tour debut in Miami, Florida.
“The Miami Fraternal Order of Police has voted to have all law enforcement officers boycott Beyonce’s concert which is being held at the Miami Marlins Stadium on Wednesday, April 26, 2016,” the organization said in a statement. “The fact that Beyonce 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.”
In an attempt to clarify the controversy she created, Beyoncé told Elle magazine, “Anyone who perceives my message as anti-police is completely mistaken. I have so much admiration and respect for officers and the families of officers who sacrifice themselves to keep us safe.”
“But let’s be clear: I am against police brutality and injustice,” Beyoncé added. “Those are two separate things.”
To be clear, the anti-police imagery in Beyoncé’s Super Bowl performance and music video for “Formation” is overt. Beyoncé is seen sitting on a sinking police car. Another scene shows a graffitied wall with the words “Stop Shooting Us,” while other images show police officers raising their hands in the air, à la Michael Brown, who did not have his “hands up” when Officer Wilson fired on him.
What’s more, Beyoncé move to mock the police boycott against her comes just days after the release of her latest album, Lemonade, which also pays tribute to Black Lives Matter. During the 45-minute visual album version for Lemonade, Beyoncé is seen taking a bat to a New Orleans Police Department surveillance camera.