Miami’s police union members have voted to boycott Beyoncé’s concert at Marlins Park in April because of her Super Bowl performance and the release of a video that pays homage to the Black Panthers.
In a letter urging other police agencies across the country to take a similar stance, Fraternal Order of Police President Javier Ortiz accused the pop icon of using this year’s Super Bowl “to divide Americans by promoting the Black Panthers and her anti-police message shows how she does not support law enforcement.”
During Beyoncé’s Super Bowl halftime performance, more than a dozen leather-clad dancers finished the song “Formation” with their fists balled and raised, a gesture evoking the counter-culture Black Panther movement of the 1960s.
Though it’s not clear if other police departments have taken a similar stance, an online site called AL.com reported that no Tampa police have signed up for off-duty jobs at the sold-out show in Tampa the night after Miami.
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In an agreement reached when Marlins Park was built in Little Havana in 2012, Miami police patrol the streets and facade outside the footprint of the Little Havana stadium. Miami Police Maj. Delrish Moss said despite the police lieutenant’s stance, officers will patrol wherever is required.
Beyoncé’s Formation World Tour is scheduled to kick off at Marlins Park on April 27.
In response, Ella Moore, president of the Miami Community Police Benevolent Association, wrote a scathing open letter to the city in regards to Ortiz.
“I implore the City’s leadership to do whatever is necessary to put a stop to Mr. Ortiz’s antics,” she wrote. “Javier Ortiz can no longer be allowed free and unfettered license to destroy the reputation of one of the finest law enforcement agencies in the nation. This is another embarrassment to the City of Miami.”