“Renaissance”: Did Beyoncé offend people with disabilities? The artist removes an excerpt from the song

Beyoncé’s latest album, as expected, has caused worldwide euphoria. But not everyone is thrilled. Disability organizations were outraged by a snippet of lyrics from one of the 16 tracks featured on “Renaissance.” The artist decided to remove the controversial piece and create a new version of the song.

[Photo: Asterio Tecson, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons]

“Renaissance” by Beyoncé: full of rave reviews and controversy

Beyoncé’s seventh solo album, “Renaissance,” saw the light of day at the end of July and was a huge hit from the get-go. It already broke a Spotify record on the first day. As Hype Beast reports, with 43 million listens within 24 hours of its release, the music queen’s latest baby earned the title of the most streamed album recorded by a woman.

It doesn’t stop there. Each of the 16 compositions featured on “Renaissance” made it to the U.S. platform’s Top 25 chart, with seven tracks making it to the Top 10.

Unfortunately, not everyone is thrilled with the “revival” work of the artist. Or, in fact, a fragment of it. And actually one word, used by the diva in the lyrics of one of her songs.

[Photo: J.ébey, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons]

Beyoncé removes a track from “Renaissance”

“Spazzin’ on that ass, spaz on that ass,” sings Beyoncé on the track “Heated,” created in collaboration with Drake.

And that’s what “spazzin” was all about.

“It was like a slap in the face,” Australian spokeswoman for people with disabilities, Hannah Diviney, told the BBC after hearing the piece.

The problematic phrase comes from the English word “spastic,” a term for a person suffering from bilateral spastic paralysis, one type of cerebral palsy. The use of the word in a non-medical context is widely considered offensive. In fact, so is “spaz,” which is colloquially sometimes used to refer to someone who is clumsy, uncoordinated or “unkempt.”

Responding to the wave of outrage that spread around the world a few days after the release of her album “Renaissance,” Beyoncé has decided to apologize and re-record the controversial song excerpt. Speaking to the BBC, the artist’s spokeswoman stressed that the unfortunate phrase was not used by the diva intentionally, in a hurtful way. Nonetheless, the star’s representative assured, a new version of “Heated” will be made, and the lines that provoked violent reactions will be removed from it.

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