An anti-Beyonce protest planned in New York yesterday (February 16) saw only three people attend, while a counter protest experienced a much higher turnout.
The anti-Beyoncé protest was a response to the star’s politically-charged performance at the Super Bowl half-time show earlier this month (February 7). During the NFL event, Beyoncé joined Coldplay onstage, performing her new single ‘Formation’.
The performance had been criticised by some for being “anti-police” with its references to references to the Black Panthers and the Black Lives Matter movement. A formal protest outside the NFL headquarters in Manhattan had been scheduled for Tuesday, the same day that tickets for Beyoncé’s ‘Formation’ tour went on sale.
The event description obtained by the New York Daily News described the performance as “hate speech” and “racism”, asking potential attendees: “Are you offended as an American that Beyonce pulled her race-baiting stunt at the Superbowl? Do you agree that it was a slap in the face to law enforcement?”
However, Rolling Stone reports that only three people attended the protest: a volunteer for Ted Cruz’s US Presidential campaign and two NFL fans.
“Some of us are surprised that there are only a couple of us out here today,” Cruz campaigner Ariel Kohane told NY Mag. “It’s a business day. Also, the weather; the rain turned a lot of people away. You know, 6pm would [have been] a better time.”
Tajh Sutton, part of the counter protest, told reporters: “I think the assumption is that the people supporting Beyoncé are like these superfans that are just gonna love her and support her no matter what she does. But I would have been out here no matter who the person was that did something like this, if they were attacked this way as a result.”
Protest against @Beyonce outside NFL HQ turns out to be no show #1010wins pic.twitter.com/dY6O2dD6aY
— glenn schuck (@glennschuck) February 16, 2016
Anti-anti-Beyoncé protest growing, still no anti-Beyoncé protest. pic.twitter.com/sDcp1X6vIm
— Alex Silverman (@AlexSilverman) February 16, 2016
The protestors didn't show up, but we did! ✊ #getinformation #BlackLivesMatter #BlackGirlMagic #beyhive #nyc pic.twitter.com/Vso7FBmsC6
— Jacky Johnson (@JackyJ) February 16, 2016
Beyoncé Brings Protest Music Back: The Main ‘Formation’ Talking Points
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani was one of the high-profile individuals to criticise Beyoncé for her Super Bowl performance, saying it was “outrageous” to make a political statement during a football game.
“This is football, not Hollywood, and I thought it was really outrageous that she used it as a platform to attack police officers who are the people who protect her and protect us, and keep us alive,” he said.
Beyoncé will tour the UK during June and July. See below for Beyoncé’s full UK dates:
Sunderland, Stadium of Light (June 28)
Cardiff, Principality Stadium (30)
London, Wembley Stadium (July 2, 3)
Manchester, Emirates Old Trafford Cricket Ground (5)
Glasgow, Hampden Park (7)
SEE MORE: Beyoncé’s Best Live Moments