News

Eminem defies NFL by kneeling during Super Bowl halftime show

The NFL has denied rumours that they told Eminem not to kneel during this year’s Super Bowl halftime performance.

In a tribute to Colin Kaepernick, Eminem took a knee during his performance of Lose Yourself at the Super Bowl halftime show, performing alongside Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Mary J. Blige, and Kendrick Lamar.

The NFL reportedly warned Eminem not to kneel during his the halftime performance, but the 49-year-old rapper acted against the league’s directions to show support to the Black Lives Matter movement and ex-NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s fight against racial injustice in the sport.

Eminem performing with Dr. Dre at the Super Bowl halftime performance | Credit: Valerie Macon/AFP via Getty Images

The NFL have denied these rumours, with spokesperson Brian McCarthy telling the New York Times that the league’s officials “watched it during rehearsals this week,” and had approved the performance.

In 2017, former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick filed a formal complaint against the NFL, accusing the organisation of unlawfully excluding him from the league.

The complaint came after Kaepernick was dropped by the 49ers at the end of the 2016 season, during which he knelt for the pre-game national anthem to protest against racial inequality in the USA.

Despite performing consistently as a starting quarterback for six seasons, Kaepernick has not been signed by any NFL team since, and the league have shown little sympathy for the 34-year-old athlete.

So with a history of intolerance for protesting racial inequality, the NFL will have some questions to answer if these rumours are found to be true.