Beyonce and Jay-Z refused to stand for the national anthem at the Super Bowl LIV in Miami just days after the rapper described himself as “marching for the same cause” as Colin Kaepernick.
The superstar couple and their daughter Blue Ivy were seen remaining in their seats as Demi Lovato took to the field to sing the national anthem ahead of kick-off between San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs in Miami on Sunday.
Instead of standing for the national anthem like thousands of patriotic Americans in the crowd, Beyonce was seen in her chair bopping to Lovato’s performance while others around her were on their feet.
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The reaction to the couple refusing to stand for the national anthem was mixed with some suggesting it was a gesture of support towards Colin Kaepernick. Others were quick to slam Beyonce and Jay-Z for being ‘disrespectful‘.
MailOnline reports: Representatives for Jay-Z and Beyoncé didn’t immediately reply to emails seeking comment.
Jay-Z, a co-producer of the halftime show featuring Shakira and Jennifer Lopez, announced his Roc Nation company had entered a partnership with the NFL for events and social activism last year.
The rapper received immediate backlash since he had become one of the biggest supporters of Colin Kaepernick, who sparked a fissure in the NFL when he decided to kneel when the national anthem was played before games to protest the killings of blacks by police officers.
Jay-Z’s response at that time was that he still supports protesting, kneeling and Kaepernick, but he’s also interested in working with the league to make substantial changes.
His Roc Nation deal, which was signed in August, allows Jay-Z to help select artists for major NFL performances such as at the Super Bowl and play a role in the NFL’s Inspire Change initiative.
This year’s super Bowl halftime performers Jennifer Lopez and Shakira are both clients of Roc Nation.
Defending himself against accusations he was betraying Colin Kaepernick’s Black Lives Matter ‘take a knee’ protest by partnering with the NFL, Jay-Z commented last August: ‘I think we’re past kneeling’.
For those supporting Kaepernick, Jay-Z’s deal raised eyebrows with some seeing it as a betrayal of Kaepernick’s Black Lives Matter protest.
In 2016, the football pro started kneeling during the national anthem to call attention to racial injustice and police brutality.
It came a day after Jay-Z defended his partnership with the NFL, denying it was betrayal of Kaepernick.
‘No one is saying he hasn’t been done wrong,‘ Jay-Z told the New York Times in an interview published Saturday.
‘He was done wrong. I would understand if it was three months ago. But it was three years ago and someone needs to say, ‘What do we do now -because people are still dying?”
‘We are two adult men who disagree on the tactic but are marching for the same cause.’
Regarding the negative press the deal attracted, Jay-Z said: ‘As long as real people are being hurt and marginalized and losing family members, then yes, I can take a couple rounds of negative press.’
The former San Francisco 49ers quarterback has not played in the NFL since becoming a free agent in 2017 and has argued he’s been effectively exiled from the league.
Kaepernick appeared to let his feelings be known via an Instagram story on Sunday referencing Jay-Z’s comment about moving past the kneeling.
He shared a news story about Jay-Z and Beyonce not standing and wrote: ‘I thought we were past kneeling though?’