Maroon 5 Controversy for Super Bowl Halftime 2019

Maroon 5 Controversy Super Bow

Getty Maroon 5 poses backstage at iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2014, hosted by Z100 New York and presented by Goldfish Puffs at Madison Square Garden on December 12, 2014 in New York City.

Maroon 5 is the headlining act, performing at the 2019 Super Bowl Halftime Show, but, when they accepted the gig, there was a ton of backlash. The controversy reportedly stems from many who feel that former player Colin Kaepernick was treated unjustly by the NFL for taking a knee at games, in a silent protest against the killing of black men by police. According to Esquire, the NFL is currently in a legal battle against Kaepernick.

After Maroon 5 accepted the gig, a petition was started on Change.org, urging the band to drop out of the big performance. The goal was to attain 150,000 signatures and just one day before the Super Bowl, it was up to over 115,000. In the petition’s mission statement, it says, “Kaepernick risked his career to take a knee for equality, and the NFL punished him for it. Until the league changes their policy and support players’ constitutional right to protest, no artists should agree to work with the NFL. Join me in asking Maroon 5 to drop out of the 2019 Super Bowl halftime show … The band’s lead singer, Adam Levine, has not shied away from politics in the past. He has been a strong supporter of same-sex marriage and LGBT rights. The band even changed the location of a show because the venue supported anti-gay marriage laws. If the band can take a stand for LGBT rights, they should do the same for these players.”

In comments on the petition, some of the commenters have written statements urging the band to drop out, while others have said they should ignore the petition altogether. One commenter named Michael Ennes wrote, “It’s going to take both black and white people to dent the racist structure of our institutions, like the NFL. Maroon 5, show the way.” Opposing the petition, a commenter named Michael Lawley wrote, “Disgusting you people support jerk asses like Colin Kaepernick who disrespected millions of men and woman, of all races, that died giving him the chance to even be in the NFL. It’s also disgusting for Jay Z, Rihanna, and Amy Schumer for even thinking to support Colin. Hopefully, Maroon 5 DOESN’T stand down, and respect the millions of brave men and women, of all races, who have served, currently serving, or passed away. Maroon 5, I know you can make the right decision.” But, most of the comments were about wanting Maroon 5 to give up the Super Bowl gig.

Maroon 5 is going to be joined by rappers Travis Scott and Big Boi for their Halftime Show performance and Esquire reported that the band, along with the NFL, Travis Scott and Interscope Records, would make a $500,000 donation to Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America, amid the controversy scandal. Recently, Maroon 5 keyboardist PJ Morton spoke with People about the controversy and said that they can support Kaepernick against police brutality and still carry out their jobs.

Gladys Knight, who accepted the opportunity to perform “The National Anthem” at this year’s game, has also addressed the controversy. According to Billboard, Knight’s stance on the issue was that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but that she has been singing “The National Anthem” since she was a little girl. She also spoke about love and how when there’s love, everything comes together.

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