Rapper Eminem has made it clear where he stands on America’s race issues by taking a knee during the NFL Super Bowl LVI Halftime show at the LA Rams SoFi Stadium in California.
Eminem taking a knee for Kaepernick? pic.twitter.com/T4p3vOHBUC
— The Recount (@therecount) February 14, 2022
Eminem was performing his hit track Lose Yourself, where he was accompanied by longtime collaborator Dr Dre, and as the lyrics wrapped up, the artist got down on one knee.
The gesture has been used by NFL players in support of the Black Lives Matter movement after NFL star and activist Colin Kaepernick kneeled during the US National Anthem in protest against police brutality and system racial oppression against Black Americans.
According to reports, Marshall Mathers aka Eminem had spoken to the NFL prior to performing and asked about being able to take the knee in support of Kaepernick. The NFL had allegedly asked Mathers not to do so (some say he was banned) saying it would turn the infamous half time show into a divisive political moment.
Officials at the NFL has denied this allegation, however, saying players had been taking the knee since 2016 without sanctions and so the performers of the half time show would be met with the same standards.
Other stories have floated around regarding creative differences between officials and both Dre and Snoop Dog. According to the NY Post, Dre felt “disgustingly censored” as the NFL didn’t want any swearing during the performances and lyrics changed that were negative towards US police.
The NFL Super Bowl Half Time Show is one of the most watched extravaganzas of the year and arguably even bigger than the game itself. It’s tapped into some of the biggest pop stars in history to perform, including Beyonce, Lady Gaga, Madonna, The Weeknd, Jennifer Lopez and Bruno Mars.
The 2015 show with Katy Perry, Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliot was officially the most viewed show of all time.
Alongside Eminem, this year’s line up included Kendrick Lamar, Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, 50 Cent, and Snoop Dogg.