Beyoncé performed at the MTV Video Music Awards on Sunday, singing some of the biggest hits from her new album “Lemonade.”
The 24-time VMA-winner, who has been outspoken in her criticism of gun violence and police-involved shootings of African Americans, delivered a political statement during the performance.
Opening with her song “Pray You Catch Me,” she took the stage accompanied by dancers dressed in white.
One by one, they fell to the ground in a red spotlight, a reference to gun violence and police shootings in the U.S.
A man in a black hoodie – which became a symbol after Trayvon Martin was shot wearing a hoodie in 2012 – emerged and stood behind Beyoncé, holding her shoulders.
That moment wasn’t Beyoncé’s only nod to the Black Lives Matter movement at the VMAs.
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— deray mckesson (@deray) August 28, 2016
She was accompanied on the red carpet by four “mothers of the movement,” whose children had been killed by police.
Beyoncé’s entourage included Sybrina Fulton, Martin’s mother; Gwen Carr, mother of Eric Garner; Lesley McSpadden-Head, mother of Michael “Mike” Brown, Jr.; and Wanda Johnson, Oscar Grant’s mother.
Watch Beyoncé’s performance above, and let us know what you think about her statement in the comments.
On America’s Newsroom, Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke said it’s “obvious” that Beyoncé, referring to her as a “one-percent-er,” is using these mothers to prove to the black community that she’s “down with the struggle.”
“She doesn’t care about these people. How much money has she donated to these causes that she claims to support? It’s like any other Hollywood elitist. It’s all theater,” he said.
Clarke said the mothers suffered a “great loss,” but noted that many of their sons “were involved in behavior that contributed to their demise.”