Courtesy of Rolling Out
Beyoncé made a triumphant and stirring return to the music scene this weekend when she released both her latest album, Lemonade, and an accompanying film that featured videos for all of the songs and showcased not only her view of Black American life but also let viewers in on the infidelity she experienced in her marriage with Jay Z. With so much striking content and shocking revelations, fans have been talking about the visual album non-stop. But one person in particular isn’t impressed with Bey’s new political stance on Black life and that person is British news journalist Piers Morgan, who recently blasted Bey in a new article.
As fans know, Beyoncé’s short film “Lemonade” resonates as a love letter to Black women and Black life and even features Lesley McSpadden and Sybrina Fulton, the mothers of Mike Brown and Trayon Martin, holding photos of their sons as a tribute to their lives and a protest to police brutality.
However, Morgan doesn’t believe that there’s any sincerity in Bey featuring these mothers in her film. Instead, he claims in a new article that she’s just exploiting them to help sell her album.
“I have huge personal sympathy for both women and there is no doubt that African-Americans have been treated appallingly by certain rogue elements within the country’s police forces,” Morgan wrote in the op-ed. “But I felt very uneasy watching these women being used in this way to sell an album. It smacks of shameless exploitation.”
Morgan then went on to explain how an interview he did with Bey back in 2008 regarding President Obama’s first inauguration as proof that Bey’s new political stance is a far cry from the person he interviewed years ago.
“‘Did you experience racism as you grew up?’ I asked,” wrote Morgan, before sharing Bey’s response. “‘A bit, but I feel like with my career I’ve now broken barriers. I don’t think people think about my race. I think they look at me as an entertainer and a musician and I’m very happy about that because that’s how I look at people. It’s not about color and race, and I’m happy that’s changing,’” Bey replied.
Morgan then claimed that he preferred Beyoncé when she was less “agitating” and more concerned with being entertaining than speaking about her experiences and viewpoints of the world as a Black woman.
“The new Beyoncé wants to be seen as a Black woman political activist first and foremost, entertainer and musician second. I still think she’s a wonderful singer and performer, and some of the music on Lemonade is fantastic. But I have to be honest, I preferred the old Beyoncé. The less inflammatory, agitating one,” Morgan wrote.
While Morgan could’ve chosen to simply critique the film’s music or look or anything else actually regarding its aesthetic, the fact that he chose to specifically critique Bey shining a light on the mothers of slain Black men is just a sad and insulting display of Morgan’s own white privilege, as well as his total ignorance and disregard for the thoughts of a Black woman about her experiences as a Black woman.
But we’re not the only ones who gave Morgan a side-eye over his comments. Read what fellow journalist and TV One editor Roland S. Martin and “How To Get Away With Murder” actor Matt McGorry had to say to Morgan on Twitter, after the cut.