Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show: Entertainment or Political Statement?

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For years the Super Bowl halftime show has entertained audiences across the world with countless unforgettable performances by some of the world’s greatest artist and this year was no different. Although, surely, some would probably disagree, this year’s halftime show was one of the ‘BEST’ if you ask me. It opened with Coldplay performing a mixture of their fan favorites which included “Yellow” and “Viva la Vida”.  Bruno Mars then hit the stage with America’s favorite “Uptown Funk”; the song in which Beyoncé fiercely entered the stadium to preform her new single “Formation”, which she released a day before the game. Along side her stood an entourage of background dancers. The 50 female background dancers were dressed in all black with afros & berets, in reference to the Black Panther Party which was founded 50 years ago in efforts to address police brutality. With a performance of her latest single “Formation” Beyoncé payed homage to the Black Panther Party and Malcolm X  all while dressed in a Michael Jackson inspired costume.

Apparently Beyoncé’s implied message from the performance has offended some people in the great race debate and in the political arena. TV host Tomi Lahren seems to think Beyoncé’s performance implies that black lives matter more than whites which we all know is untrue. Pro black does not mean anti-white. In a video rant, Lahren went on to say, “Beyoncé, just like President Obama, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Al Sharpton and so many others just won’t let America heal by continuing to rip off the historical band aid. Why be a cultural leader when you can play the victim?” She even went on to mention Jay-Z’s past drug dealing history. After hearing Lahren’s utterly disgusting comments about Beyoncé, rightfully so, the Beehive took to social media outlets and went into a tirade, bashing the host and calling her all sorts of unpleasant names. The controversy surrounding Beyoncé’s halftime performance has received ridiculous criticism and sparked the planning of protest and boycotts. Reportedly, an anti-Beyoncé protest has been planned outside of the National Football League’s (NFL) Headquarters on February 16, 2016.

Unfortunately we live in a world where it’s ok to promote and be the poster child of only those causes that are up close and personal to us.  #BlackLivesMatter is a just cause and deserves the right to be promoted by whom so chooses. It is my hope that in the mist of the chaos and confusion, America can truly comprehend the message Beyoncé was trying to convey in this year’s Super Bowl halftime performance.

Hmm. I guess Bey was right. In her latest song “Formation” she said, “You know you that chick when you cause all this conversation.” Clearly she’s doing just that.

 

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Angelica Brown is a Graduating Senior Broadcast/Mass Communications major. In her spare time she enjoys shopping, and traveling. After graduation she plans to pursue a career in acting. She will be a staff writer for The Campus Chronicle for the 2016-2017 school year.

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