WASHINGTON (AP) — Beyonce's new video "Formation" is "pro-Black Panther" and "anti-cop," says a Republican congressman, who argued Monday that it perpetuates a lie about the August 2014 shooting in Missouri of an unarmed black man by a white police officer.
"Beyonce may be a gifted entertainer but no one should really care what she thinks about any serious issue confronting our nation," New York Rep. Pete King said in a statement he posted on his Facebook page.
King condemned the video, released by the Grammy-winning singer ahead of her world tour and her performance during halftime of Sunday's Super Bowl. He also complained about the mainstream media's acceptance of the video and her Super Bowl appearance.
Beyonce's publicist had no immediate response to an email request for comment.
In the video, Beyonce is seen atop a police cruiser and there are references to the Black Lives Matter movement. King also complained that the video makes the "ritualistic reference to Michael Brown and Ferguson, Missouri, by featuring a scene of innocent people with their hands raised high above their heads in surrender."
King dismissed the notion that Brown was murdered by police as he was attempting to surrender and said this "fable" was thoroughly discredited.
"In simple language it was and is a lie from beginning to end," the congressman said, arguing that Brown was a criminal who had robbed a convenience store and the officer, Darren Wilson, was exonerated by the local prosecutor and President Barack Obama's Justice Department.
"Yet the big lie continues by Black Lives Matter, by pandering politicians and now by Beyoncé, who gets star billing at the Super Bowl," said King, who added that his father proudly served in the New York Police Department for more than 30 years.
Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, in an interview on Fox News Channel's "Fox & Friends," criticized Beyonce's halftime show and references to the Black Panthers. Dancers with the singer had afros and black berets, reminiscent of the 1960s group.
"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," Giuliani said.