Commenting on Beyonce‘s controversial (and rocking) Super Bowl halftime show, African American social critic Jonathan Gentry is making waves for comparing it to southern whites waving the confederate flag. In a video viewed more than 150K times, Gentry says let’s “cut the crap” and acknowledge the “double standard” at work in Beyonce’s performance. Gentry says he’s speaking to the “black community” when he says that if any other social group had made a similar race-based statement at the Super Bowl the black community would be “pissed.” Gentry: “You can’t tell one group ‘sit down, shut up, what you do is racist and offensive to me, put your confederate flag away’ … while we want to parade and shove how we feel down everyone else’s throat.”
Gentry says he understands Beyonce was marrying the black power movement embodied by the Black Panther Party (founded 50 years ago) with the 50th Super Bowl. But he asks: “How can you be anti-police when a hundred of them escorted you to the Super Bowl yesterday Beyonce?” — a question others have raised. “How does that make sense? That’s just not logical. How can you show that kind of disrespect?” Gentry says Beyonce is “sowing seeds into the young generation that sees that. They internalize that. It was wicked. I do know what she was doing and it was wrong.” But many disagree, which is why Gentry addresses the subject. Beyonce was also praised for her courage and for making a statement not only about black rights and power, but also women’s rights and power using one of the biggest stages there is. Everybody at least agrees it was “wicked.” They’re just using different definitions: wicked good or wicked evil.