LATINO OPINION: The Super Bowl Halftime Show Was Not a Display of Minority or Women’s Empowerment
Jennifer Lopez and Shakira are talented performers. But all their artistry and skill go by the wayside when they choose to shamelessly shake butt and bosom.
The mainstream media, the “woke” culture and sexual revolution activists, called the halftime show a bold display of Latino and women’s empowerment. The Super Bowl LIV halftime show was a gut-wrenching display of female objectification.
I speak as a Latino. And let me assure you, Latina women dancing erotically is not a sign of a minority groups being liberated. It is a distorted view and it does not reflect the lifestyle and values of a great majority of American Latinos.
Not Latino or Women’s Empowerment
Many will criticize me for saying this. But after seeing the halftime show, I was not proud to be Latino. In a way, I felt ashamed.
I am proud of my Colombian heritage. As a naturalized citizen, I’m also a full-blown patriot of the United States of America. But those things are far lower on the priority list than my faith, my values or my principles.
I understand the value of two Latina female performers on the world’s biggest musical stage. I grasp the importance of them being there. It shows that America is a diverse and culturally rich nation.
However, Latino liberation and cultural expression is not two women doing a semi-pornographic strip tease in front of 100 million people.
Latinos have much more to offer through our art, music and culture. The show betrayed Latino musicians, dancers, and singers. Many of them carry on the artistic traditions of our culture in much purer forms.
Moments of Beauty
I do want to mention some short moments of beauty. Showcasing the brass section with trumpets, trombones and a group salsa dancing were very tasteful. They resembled much of the unique Latin sound, as you will surely find if you travel to my native birthplace, Cali, Colombia.
This took me back to the 1999 Super Bowl XXXIII halftime show. Gloria Estefan performed with Stevie Wonder and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy. There, you had two performers from minority demographics represented (Latinos and blacks) merging their talent with a fusion swing band made up of white men.
The result? It was popular art at its best. There was no need for sexual innuendo or for Estefan to shake any body parts. Instead, it was much better representation of Latina women and of Latino culture general, as well as of other minority communities.
Unfortunately, the colorful variety of Latino art is undermined when we wink and nod at lust and sexual desire.
This does not help Latina women. It does not empower them or liberate them. It’s an insult to all the incredibly hardworking, intelligent, beautiful, sweet and tender Latina women in our nation. And it’s disrespectful to my mother, a God-loving person who raised me to value women as Christ does.
I’ll end with a couple of verses that help me navigate these muddy waters. 2 Corinthians 5:17 and Romans 12:2 speak to us about renewal. The first tells us: “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” The second says: “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
This often puts us at odds with what’s popular or trendy. This means saying no to the sexual revolution. And for many Latinos like me, it means doing something very hard: Taking our national pride (Colombian, American, Puerto Rican, etc.) and submitting it to the supremacy of Christ.
We should be thankful to the NFL, Pepsi and other sponsors for trying to include Latino people and show their contributions to America’s diversity. But, conservative Latinos and people of faith cannot sacrifice our values on the altar of popular culture. Celebrating sexual immorality simply because we want to “get our name out there” is not worth it.
Jorge Gomez is a senior writer and content strategist specializing in communications for faith-based nonprofits and conservative policy organizations.