Beyonce to remove offensive word from new songAugust 4, 2022
Beyonce has been forced to remove an ableist slur from her song “Heated” after receiving fierce backlash from fans. Photo / Getty Images
Beyoncé is removing an offensive term for disabled people from a new song on her new album, Renaissance, just weeks after rapper Lizzo also changed lyrics to remove the same word.
“The word, not used intentionally in a harmful way, will be replaced,” a spokeswoman for Beyoncé wrote in a statement yesterday.
The song, Heated, co-written with Canadian rapper Drake among others, uses the word “sp**,” which is considered a derogatory reference to the medical term spastic diplegia, a form of cerebral palsy.
Lizzo also removed the word from one of her songs, “Grrrls,” in June after disability advocates complained about the lyrics. Lizzo said in a statement she never wanted to promote derogatory language.
Disability advocate Hannah Diviney, who pointed out Lizzo’s lyrics that led to the change, wrote on Twitter that hearing the word again used by Beyoncé “felt like a slap in the face to me, the disabled community & the progress we tried to make with Lizzo.”
It comes after the star’s seventh studio album was leaked two days before its scheduled release.
Variety reported CD versions of the star’s first album in more than six years as well as online copies were being sold in Europe days ahead of the July 29 release date.
A French fan took to Twitter where they posted photographic proof that they had already purchased a copy of the album. “The new Beyoncé album already for sale in France? 2 days prior to the release date”, the person said.
The tweet quickly drew attention from Beyoncé fans – also known as the Beyhive, who were not happy and responded by telling others to respect the singer and report any leak links they see online.
Meanwhile, the star responded with a statement on Instagram that read, “So, the album leaked, and you all actually waited until the proper release time so you all can enjoy it together.”
She added: “I’ve never seen anything like it. I can’t thank y’all enough for your love and protection. I appreciate you for calling out anyone that was trying to sneak into the club early. It means the world to me. Thank you for your unwavering support. Thank you for being patient. We are going to take out time and enjoy the music. I will continue to give my all and do my best to bring you joy.”
The pop icon signed off with, “I love you deep.”
– Additional reporting by NZ Herald