Megyn Kelly took to X on Sunday to voice her frustration and anger over the National Football League’s use of the song “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” commonly referred to as the “Black National Anthem,” before the start of the Super Bowl. Kelly also took shots at the halftime show that featured the R&B artist Usher in subsequent posts to X.
The so-called Black National Anthem does not belong at the Super Bowl. We already have a National Anthem and it includes EVERYONE.
— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) February 11, 2024
Kelly posted to X shortly after Andra Day gave her performance of the song, kicking off what ended up being a series of posts to the social media website during the game. Kelly did not mince words on her displeasure of the song being played, along with the halftime show, even posting about the similarity of the Chief’s and 49ers’ uniforms throwing off her “cheering karma.”
I wish the uniforms were more distinct between the teams. I keep thinking the Chiefs are the Niners & vice-versa & it’s messing up my cheering karma.
— Megyn Kelly (@megynkelly) February 12, 2024
Kelly is not alone on the right with views against the song being played, with several other notable conservatives taking the same stance, like CJ Pearson, who also took to X to voice his displeasure at the song, calling it divisive.
Before tonight’s Super Bowl, as a young black man and proud American, let me make myself clear:
There is only ONE national anthem.
As there is only ONE United States of America.
And it’s for EVERYONE – white, black, yellow, and even maroon.
The Left’s agenda of division… pic.twitter.com/uIYzYb3dua
— CJ Pearson (@thecjpearson) February 11, 2024
The song has been the cause of controversy from the right since the NFL announced they would play the song before the Super Bowl game in the 2020 season. The reaction from all sides was swift, with accusations of racism or segregation coming from each side as well. However, a common theme regarding the song was a genuine lack of understanding of its history, which RedState’s Jeff Charles astutely pointed out when the song was first discussed and debated in 2020.
An understanding of the history of the song reveals that it has nothing to do with segregation or bigotry. In fact, it is a piece of music that illustrates the struggle that black Americans were facing shortly after the Reconstruction era. The song also highlights the struggle of a nation to live up to the values upon which it was founded. It is an integral part of black history, which means it is a part of American history.
There is one thing that we on the right do absolutely agree on: The song itself is not the problem. The NFL decides to perform the song as a way to fight racism or address racial disparities. It is the NFL pandering to a certain group of people to maintain their bottom financial line — just like most of the professional sports leagues and other private companies that change their social media logo to rainbow colors during Pride month.
However, this is when I step off the train and say this silliness has to stop. The silliness that I speak of is the ever-reliable conservative outrage when things like this happen. It has become predictable when it comes to professional sports — especially the NFL — that one section of society will lose their collective minds over leagues and/or teams adding certain patches or logos on their uniforms for some group or cause.
In this case, we get the same reaction from the right every February because they have someone perform the song before the game. The arguments and opinions never change, and the counterarguments and opinions never change, either. Yes, it is pandering to the black community, and yes, it can be seen as non-inclusive, as we have a National Anthem that represents ALL Americans. No, it isn’t racist to call that out, and no, it isn’t suppressing black Americans. However, the NFL will never stop performing that song because the minute they do, the right will celebrate, and the left will initiate a massive PR campaign slamming the NFL for “caving to racism” or something of that nature.
Black players make up over 56 percent of the league, and 42 percent of black Americans are serious fans of the NFL, compared to only 37 percent of white Americans. The NFL would be stupid to stop playing that song, lest they alienate the majority of their players and a huge chunk of their fanbase. Not to mention that the left loves to jump on the right when we react to this every year. They will never pass up a chance to make us look like idiots, and sometimes, we make it really easy for them. That song is here to stay; it is not going anywhere. So, can we just move on to something more important and pressing to the nation?