While there’s no doubt many fans of Rihanna were elated to see her make her grand return to music during the 2023 Super Bowl Halftime Show, some are wondering why she accepted the opportunity after previously opting not to in support of Colin Kaepernick.
To refresh your memory, back in 2019, the “Pour It Up” singer confirmed to US Vogue that she said no to an offer to perform at the Super Bowl in solidarity with the former 49ers quarterback, who was essentially blackballed for silently sideline protesting by taking a knee to raise awareness of police brutality and injustice by the NFL.
“I couldn’t dare do that. For what? Who gains from that? Not my people,” Rih told the magazine at the time. “I just couldn’t be a sellout. I couldn’t be an enabler. There’s things within that organization that I do not agree with at all, and I was not about to go and be of service to them in any way.”
Now, in a new interview for the March 2023 cover of British Vogue published on Wednesday, Rih explained why her stance changed:
“There’s still a lot of mending to be done in my eyes, but it’s powerful to break those doors, and have representation at such a high, high level and a consistent level. Two Super Bowls back-to-back, [in reference to last year’s headliners, Dr Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J Blige and Kendrick Lamar].
You know, representing the urban community, globally. It is powerful. It sends a really strong message. Of course, raising a young Black man is one of the scariest responsibilities in life. You’re like, ‘What am I leaving my kids to? This is the planet they’re gonna be living on?’ All of those things really start to hit differently.”
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To read Rihanna’s full interview, head to vogue.co.uk.