Beyoncé’s ‘pro-Black’ messages spark police protests at Houston concert

Photo Credit: Beyonce's Instagram (@beyonce)
Photo Credit: Beyonce’s Instagram (@beyonce)

Beyoncé’s homecoming for the “Formation” tour recently occurred at NRG Stadium in Houston. While the sold-out show has reviewed by some as the best performance of the tour, Beyoncé faced backlash from law enforcement.

According to KHOU, a group of police officers held a rally outside of NRG Stadium to protest Beyoncé’s “pro-Black” messages on “Formation.” The Coalition for Police and Sheriffs (C.O.P.S.) shined a large blue light outside of the venue while she performed. The police officers and fellow protestors wore “Police Lives Matter” in a disrespectful attempt to discredit the voices of “Black Lives Matter.”  One organization fights to bring attention to the deaths of unarmed citizens, while the other organization seeks to ignore justice without reason. Officers who protested Beyoncé said that they believed she her lyrics and imagery were anti-police.

It was the first official boycott of a show headlined by Beyoncé since the initial calls for boycotts following the Super Bowl. Beyoncé’s “Formation” video featured several strong images of Black power and her Super Bowl performance appeared to pay homage to the Black Panthers.

The Miami Fraternal Order of Police called for police across the country to participate in a nationwide boycott of her tour. In a statement, Javier Ortiz, president of the Miami FOP, said, “The fact that Beyoncé used this year’s Super Bowl to divide Americans by promoting the Black Panthers and her antipolice message shows she does not support law enforcement. We ask all law enforcement labor organizations to join our boycott across country and to boycott all of her concerts.”

Although there were similar threats, each show of the tour has been secured by police officers thus far. The Coalition for Police and Sheriffs should spend more time thinking of ways to keep communities safe instead of boycotting a singer’s choice of artistic expression.

A.R. Shaw
A.R. Shaw

A.R. Shaw is an author and journalist who documents culture, politics, and entertainment. He has covered The Obama White House, the summer Olympics in London, and currently serves as Lifestyle Editor for Rolling Out magazine. Follow his journey on Twitter @arshaw and Instagram @arshaw23.

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