By Jacob Katel
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By Laurie Charles
She is the Queen Bey of strong, independent ladies the world over. But that doesn't stop haters from throwing shade whenever she proudly represents her famous hubby.
Right now, Beyoncé is feeling pretty stoked about her personal life. The woman gave birth to her first child last year, and she's happily married to hip-hop legend and business mogul Jay-Z. So who can blame her if she wants to show off a little and let her world tour reflect this domestic happiness?
Many feminists think the name of her current road trip, the Mrs. Carter Show World Tour, is detrimental to female empowerment. But we say phooey! It's hard being a woman with a successful career and an enviable home life. Besides, Beyoncé has already done a lot to further strong womanly ideals.
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She regularly pens feminist anthems. The Queen has written a ton of songs that empower women and encourage girls to take charge. Back in the days of Destiny's Child, she co-wrote and performed hits such as "Bills Bills Bills" and "Survivor," which touted independence from men and a can-do attitude. She's topped charts with songs like "Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)" and "Irreplaceable." There's also "If I Were a Boy," which takes on traditional gender roles by reminding women to be strong and telling men how to treat a lady. "Independent Women" was a feminist anthem of its time, and "Run the World" kind of says it all, right?
She appeared on the cover of Ms. This was pretty controversial for Bey and the feminist magazine Ms. A lot of commenters raged about how the popular singer couldn't possibly be a feminist because of the way she dresses and dances. But at least she doesn't prattle on about getting black-out drunk and gratuitously kissing girls, like some other pop stars. Just because you feel sexy doesn't mean you're not a feminist, and making the cover of a feminist magazine is something Beyoncé should be proud of.
She runs an entertainment empire. Not only is Mrs. Carter a proud mother and chart-topping superstar, but she also runs her own fashion line, House of Deréon, with her mother. She's the face of numerous corporate sponsorships, including Pepsi, Tommy Hilfiger, and L'Oréal. She's starred in hit films such as Austin Powers in Goldmember and Dreamgirls and directed her own biopic. She even finds time for philanthropic endeavors and was named the ambassador for World Humanitarian Day 2012.
She has an all-female backing band. Beyoncé doesn't simply say girls run the world; she puts her words into action. Did you know she assembled her own all-female backing band in the hopes of inspiring girls at her shows to get involved in the musical arts? The group is called the Sugar Mamas, and it took the stage with Bey, front and center, during her show-stopping Super Bowl 2013 halftime performance. Who said chicks can't shred?
Because she said so. Feminism gets a bad rap these days. Women and girls across America have convinced themselves that admitting to being a feminist is wrong. They forget that feminism is about pride and equality, and they're afraid to embrace it for fear of being labeled a lezzy bitch. When Katy Perry was awarded Woman of the Year by Billboard, she eagerly admitted she wasn't a feminist in her acceptance speech. And Taylor Swift mentions in interviews that she "doesn't really think about things as guys versus girls." Meanwhile, Beyoncé is one of the few entertainers ballsy (heh-heh) enough to take a vocal stand in favor of women's rights. Now that's what we call stepping up to a challenge and putting on your big-girl pants.