Lizzo has removed ableist slur contained in her new single “GRRLS” after fans called her out.
After finding that one of the lyrics in her single “GRRRLS” from her upcoming fourth studio album Special contained an ableist slur, the Grammy Award winner, 34, unveiled a new version of the song on Monday.
“It’s been brought to my attention that there is a harmful word in my new song ‘GRRRLS.’ Let me make one thing clear: I never want to promote derogatory language,” she wrote in a statement.
“As a fat Black woman in America, I’ve had many hurtful words used against me so I overstand the power words can have (whether intentionally or in my case, unintentionally).”
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“I’m proud to say there’s a new version of GRRRLS with a lyric change. This is the result of me listening and taking action. As an influential artist I’m dedicated to being part of the change I’ve been waiting to see in the world,” the statement concluded.
“GRRRLS” released on Friday June 10, featured the lyric: “Hold my bag, bitch, hold my bag / Do you see this s—? I’m a sp-z” which has now been replaced with “hold me back.”
The new version has already replaced the original on streaming services, including Apple Music, Spotify, and YouTube.
Over the weekend, Lizzo received backlash for the single’s ableist lyric.
Disability advocate Hannah Diviney tweeted, “Hey @lizzo my disability Cerebral Palsy is literally classified as Spastic Diplegia (where spasticity refers to unending painful tightness in my legs) your new song makes me pretty angry + sad. ‘Spaz’ doesn’t mean freaked out or crazy. It’s an ableist slur. It’s 2022. Do better.”
However, Diviney has also thrown her weight behind Lizzo’s apology and solution, tweeting, “Thank you so much for hearing us Lizzo, and for understanding that this was only ever meant gently and being open to learning, it honestly means the world,” she added. “You’re a real true ally.”
Listen to “GRRRLS” by Lizzo: