When I watched the Super Bowl half time show with my family and in-laws, it was pure comedy. Maxi was shushing me because I was squealing about Bruno Mars and his slick dance moves. My father-in-law, who just had hip surgery, stiffly got up to dance in quintessential old white guy fashion, and my son was quietly singing along to every word of “Uptown Funk.” Then Beyonce came out to slay.
None of us was thinking that Beyonce and her backup dancers where using the platform as a political statement for #blacklivesmatter, or that the outfits were a throwback to the Black Power regalia, and that the “X” formation was in homage to Malcolm X. I was just in awe of the fierceness of the ‘fros and reminded that I really, REALY need to do more squats.
I found out about all the political stuff later. While some are outraged about Beyonce using the politically-neutral Super Bowl as a platform, she is, after all, the Queen B. At this point, she can do whatever she wants. It was a rather apropos time as well. February is indeed Black History Month. In a statement, Beyonce says she wanted people to “feel proud.” A lesser performer who did such a thing, however, could be taking a career gamble that could end up being a sucker’s bet.
But what no one will pick up about this whole affair is that, once again, a black woman is putting herself and her career on the line to protest the plight of black men, despite the fact that black women are also facing police brutality. But let’s move on from there, shall we? Beyonce calls herself a feminist and touts her prerogative to wave that flag, but I’ve never seen her discuss openly how black male rappers like her husband have dragged the reputations of black women through the mud for coins. I’ve never heard her talk about how black girls and women in the hood aren’t free to express themselves in the fullness of their femininity and sexuality LIKE SHE CAN without being targets for rape and even death. I’ve heard her tout independence while she has had the benefit of marriage and a child conceived in wedlock.
Beyonce is free to pick her battles. But as usual, black girls and women take the back seat.
One commenter on our Facebook page actually says it better than I do:
Agree. This seems disingenuous. She has never been about anything political, and suddenly, when all these grassroots organizations
etc are receiving a lot of attention, here she comes with Black Panthers regalia acting as if she is down with the struggle. She takes one of the most misogynistic black nationalist movements with rapist Eldrich Cleaver and uses it to talk about Black identity. That group is up there with the Black Israelites, in terms of women hate.
Just what do the black panthers have to do with NOW?
How is she and her miss video vixen style, doing anything “revolutionary” by dressing in black leather sexed up garb, and mumbling a few incoherent lines about the Black experience?
I actually don’t give a hoot, about her video vixen mentality, but I have never heard her take the approach of Nina Simone, Lauryn Hill, Eryka Badu, etc . These women speak the speak, in many interviews, in their defiantly non European standard of beauty (hair style and texture), and most of their music. Even if Eryka wore a leather bikini, you always know how she feels about Black community empowerment
She seems opportunistic here and hoping to cash in on the rage of the Black community, by offering platitudes and visual symbols without the bite.
Sorry, but I am so over her and her fake neo-soul, I dont write my own music, No one has ever seen my real hair or face BS. ..
Yep. That’s what I thought.