NFL cancels national anthem performance by Christian singer because she isn’t vaccinated

Victory Boyd sings the 'Star Spangled Banner' in a video posted to YouTube on Sept. 9, 2021.
Victory Boyd sings the "Star Spangled Banner" in a video posted to YouTube on Sept. 9, 2021. | YouTube/Victory Boyd

Christian singer Victory Boyd, who has openly shared her refusal to take the COVID-19 vaccine due to her faith, claims she could not perform the national anthem at an NFL game last week because of a COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

The 20-year-old Grammy Award winner originally planned to make an appearance at the NFL season-opening game last Thursday between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Dallas Cowboys in Tampa Bay. 

But according to The Epoch Times, the NFL's senior director for media and entertainment events told Boyd's father and manager, John Boyd, in an email that the league's "Game Day Field Access Policy" requires the singer of the national anthem to be fully vaccinated. 

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“As I understand that Victory will not be fully vaccinated by the time of the Kickoff game, she would not have been able to comply with the terms of the Game Day Field Access Policy," the email read.

Boyd said she relies on her Christian faith to guide her in her decision not to take the COVID-19 vaccine.

"I am in prayer to make sure that the Lord guides me into the right decision concerning receiving an unproven injection with artificial properties that can potentially have a long-term effect on my reproductive health,” Boyd told the media.

“If I want to take the vaccine, the decision will be between myself, my doctor, and my God. At this point, the Spirit of God is leading me to take a stand for freedom of choice."

Boyd previously shared how despite growing up in the Church, she came to a realization about “the whole point of having a Savior” at 18 years old while recovering from a disabling bicycle accident two years ago.

The accident left Boyd with missing teeth and a broken jaw and arm. When she learned her jaw needed to be wired shut for six to eight weeks, Boyd said she thought she would never sing again. 

“In a split of a second, I lost everything that made me valuable to society. … I lost my identity. … I couldn’t stand calling myself Victory any longer, even though that’s my legal name,” Boyd recalled. “I slipped into a depression and [I] didn’t know what I believed anymore. … This was a whole other level of trauma that I never experienced before. I believed Jesus is real, I just really needed Him to show up and give me a reason to exist.”

Boyd said that Jesus “showed up” and helped her realize it wasn’t her responsibility to be "strong and fight the demons" that attacked her mind.

“Jesus already defeated those very demons and is ready to give anyone who calls on His Name the Victory that He already won. When Jesus rose from the dead, He won the victory for us all,” she wrote.

“I found a new identity in Christ and though my mouth was still wired shut and my arm still broken and my teeth still missing and my face still disfigured, I knew I had the right to call myself Victory again my Jesus came back to life and victoriously brought me back to life with Him.”  ​​

When Boyd discovered the NFL would not allow her to sing at the game because she refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine, she took to social media to express her disappointment. 

In an Instagram post, Boyd shared a picture of The Epoch Times report. In her caption, she described America as a place that is in a “fight for freedom.”

“America from its inception was a dream. A dream of a place that champions equality, liberty and justice for ALL people. … There has always been a fight to make this dream into a reality,” she wrote.

From the Revolutionary War to the Civil War, the singer stressed that freedom "has never been won without conflict."

"We’re in a pretty scary time right now where discrimination and segregation is becoming socially acceptable and few are doing anything to resist," she wrote. 

"I’ve made peace with not being able to sing the National Anthem for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. But, I have not and will not make peace with the re-emergence of segregation and discrimination. This is not okay and it’s about time that we say so.”

In another Instagram post, Boyd described her decision not to get vaccinated as a health decision that involves “taking a stand.”

“We stand to lose more by sitting down. … If Americans don’t stand … what hope is there for the rest of the world,” Boyd wrote. “Let’s start by respecting each other’s right to make our own medical decisions. We can respect each other's boundaries while still allowing love to abound irrespective of one’s personal health choices.”

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