Beyoncé (Photo credit: Paola Kudacki for 'ELLE')

After Beyoncé’s performance at the Super Bowl 50 halftime show, her “Formation” video and its underlying message, which some have called “anti-police,” has become the focus of intense criticism and even a few counter-protests. Until recently, Beyoncé has been quiet about the backlash, but now, in an interview with ELLE Magazine, she is speaking out about her message as well as her stance concerning police brutality.

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“I mean, I’m an artist and I think the most powerful art is usually misunderstood. But anyone who perceives my message as anti-police is completely mistaken,” she said during the interview.

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“I have so much admiration and respect for officers and the families of officers who sacrifice themselves to keep us safe. But let’s be clear: I am against police brutality and injustice. Those are two separate things. If celebrating my roots and culture during Black History Month made anyone uncomfortable, those feelings were there long before a video and long before me,” she added.

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“I’m proud of what we created and I’m proud to be part of a conversation that is pushing things forward in a positive way.”

The rare interview will be coming out in the May issue of ELLE Magazine, available for purchase in the UK.