- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Beyonce has finally addressed the explosive backlash that began in February over her music video “Formation” and her subsequent Super Bowl halftime performance of the song, saying people are “completely mistaken” if they thought her message was “anti-police.”

The pop star spoke of the controversy for the first time in an interview for Elle magazine’s upcoming issue, E! reported.

“I mean, I’m an artist, and I think the most powerful art is usually misunderstood,” Beyonce reportedly told Elle. “But anyone who perceives my message as anti-police is completely mistaken. I have so much admiration and respect for officers and the families of the officers who sacrifice themselves to keeps us safe.

Beyonce’s performance of “Formation” at Super Bowl 50 featured an army of black women wearing leather outfits and raising black power fists, which many critics compared to the Black Panther Party. Beyonce’s music video for the song also invoked the “Hands up, don’t shoot” rallying cry of the Black Lives Matter movement. Police unions across the country subsequently launched a boycott against Beyonce for being anti-cop.

Beyonce told Elle that she wants to make it very clear that she is “against police brutality and injustice,” not law enforcement as a whole.

“Those are two separate things,” she said. “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. 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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