Lizzo has decided to change the words in her latest motivational single, “Grrrls,” after controversy ensued over the song’s lyrical content. Many of her supporters called her out over her use of the word “spaz,” creating a minor setback for the star’s rollout. After people decried her use of, what was found to be ableist language, Lizzo owned up to her mistake, apologized in an Instagram post, and released a rerecorded version of the song.
“Let me make one thing clear: I never want to promote derogatory language,” she wrote in her pictured statement below. “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.)”
Lizzo added, “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.”
Commenting under an Instagram post by The Shade Room on Monday (June 13), The Game expressed confusion by the offensive nature of Lizzo’s use of the word “spaz” as well as her decision to alter the lyric.
“Spaz is like wildin out… I’m lost,” commented the West Coast rapper. Three 6 Mafia’s Gangsta Boo also offered her thoughts on the situation as she commented on the internet, allowing everyone to have a voice on everything. “This is really aggravating!” she exclaimed. “The internet gave WAY TOOOOOOOOOOOO MANY people voices to cry.”
Some people on the internet have argued that Gangsta Boo and The Game’s confusion and Lizzo’s initial usage of “spaz” comes from the African-American Vernacular English understanding of the word, often rooted in slang for, as The Game mentioned, “wildin out.”
On the other hand, the disabled community has pointed out that “spaz” is short for Spastic Diplegia Cerebral Palsy. According to Genetic and Rare Diseases (GARD), Spastic Diplegia is a phenomenon, “a neurological condition that usually appears in infancy or early childhood, and permanently affects muscle control and coordination. Symptoms include increased muscle tone, which leads to spasticity (stiff or tight muscles and exaggerated reflexes) in the legs.”
Lizzo‘s single, “Grrrls,” will appear on her forthcoming studio album, Special, which hits the streets on July 15.