Ring the alarm: Beyoncé’s controversial song “Formation” and its accompanying music video are not anti-police. The singer said as much in a new interview for Elle’s May issue, telling the mag she has a lot of “respect” for officers.
When the Grammy-winning superstar, 35, released the headline-making visual for the first single off her as-yet-untitled sixth studio album on February 6, many across the United States lashed out at her for seemingly taking aim at law enforcement.
As millions of fans who’ve watched the “Formation” video know, the mom of Blue Ivy, 4, sits atop a sinking cop car in New Orleans as Black Lives Matter imagery is spliced in between statement-making scenes. One part of the clip shows a young African American boy dancing in front of an all-white group of policemen, while another features the words, “Stop shooting us,” flashing on the screen.
But as Queen Bey explains in her Elle cover story, she never intended to disrespect America’s men in blue.
“I mean, I’m an artist and I think the most powerful art is usually misunderstood. But anyone who perceives my message as anti-police is completely mistaken,” she told the outlet. “I have so much admiration and respect for officers and the families of officers who sacrifice themselves to keep us safe.”
However, the Ivy Park designer was quick to say that she still stands for the themes expressed in “Formation.” “But let’s be clear: I am against police brutality and injustice,” she added. “Those are two separate things.”
Bey also defended her politically charged February 7 Super Bowl 50 halftime show performance, which featured a tribute to late civil rights activist Malcolm X. At the time, former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani slammed her stage show as an attack on cops.
“If celebrating my roots and culture during Black History Month made anyone uncomfortable, those feelings were there long before a video and long before me,” she continued. “I’m proud of what we created and I’m proud to be part of a conversation that is pushing things forward in a positive way.”
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