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Lizzo changes lyrics from 'Grrrls' after backlash over ableist slur

By Raychele Mendoza Published Jun 14, 2022 5:43 pm

“I’m proud to say there’s a new version of GRRRLS with a lyric change.” 

After Lizzo’s song Grrrls was released, the singer received non-stop public criticism on social media for incuding an "ableist" term, considered derogatory against individuals with disabilities.

The American recording star's latest single from her anticipated fourth studio album "Special," has disappointed fans leading to public backlash and calls for the line to be removed.

In the song, Lizzo says, “Hold my bag, bitch, hold my bag / Do you see this shit? I’ma sp*z.” 

After negative feedback, the singer shared a statement announcing that she released a new version of the song with changed lyrics.  

The offensive slang term originates from the word “spastic,” which means someone who is affected by spasms in the body. The word is meant to describe disabled people who experience this condition.

Netizens voiced out their statements online calling out Lizzo for her choice of words. 

"There’s no excuse for using an ableist insult in a song in 2022. As someone who champions women, plus size people and others whom society treats poorly, Lizzo preaches inclusivity and should do better," said Twitter user @AutisticCallum.

"Hey Lizzo, my disability Cerebral Palsy is literally classified as Spastic Dipelgia (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" chimed in @hannah_diviney.

Lizzo responded with a post on Instagram, acknowledging the harmful term which she used unintentionally.

"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," the artist wrote.

"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). 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 to waiting to see in the world. Xoxo, Lizzo," she added.

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Listen to the updated version of Grrrls here.