Shading Queen Bey. Monica Lewinsky called out Beyoncé for her lyrics about her affair with Bill Clinton. The Renaissance singer wrote lyrics referencing Monica’s affair with the former President of the United States.
Monica Lewinsky tweeted on August 2, 2022, “uhmm, while we’re at it… #Partition.” In the tweet, she included a Variety article about Beyoncé removing a lyric from her latest album Renaissance. Activists accused the singer of including an ableist term, “sp—z” in the song “Heated.” Hannah Diviney wrote in The Guardian on August 1, 2022, about the use of the lyric, ”Language you can be sure I will never ignore, no matter who it comes from or what the circumstances are,” she wrote in part in the piece published Monday, August 1. Beyoncé’s team responded to the controversy and confirmed that they would remove the lyrics. “The word, not used intentionally in a harmful way, will be replaced,” they told Variety.
“Partition” is a song that was included in Beyoncé’s 2013 self-titled album Beyoncé. During the bridge of the song, Beyoncé sings, “He bucked all my buttons, he ripped my blouse / He Monica Lewinski’d all on my gown.” The lyric references Monica’s affair with Bill Clinton while she worked at the White House in 1995 and 1996. In an op-ed that she wrote for Vanity Fair in 2014, Monica revealed how many music artists used her affair in their music. She wrote, “Miley Cyrus references me in her twerking stage act, Eminem raps about me, and Beyoncé’s latest hit gives me a shout-out. Thanks, Beyoncé, but if we’re verbing, I think you meant ‘Bill Clinton’d all on my gown,’ not ‘Monica Lewinsky’d.’ ”
Various Twitter users took to the social media site to talk about how they felt about Monica’s demand for change. One user quote tweeted Monica’s tweet, “Hold up rappers been disrespecting your name since you put one knee down and NOW you’re offended?!?” Monica replied, “hi ya. it’s actually not the 1st time i’ve said anything— maybe just 1st time you + the other folks have heard it. usually i reference this poking fun at myself (eg rap muse or see tedtalk below)… beyoncé’s use was most disappointing cuz i was a fan.”
Beyoncé’s lyric change comes weeks after Lizzo changed lyrics of her song “Grrrls” which included the same derogatory term. The Special artist made a statement in an Instagram post. “I’m proud to say there’s a new version of ‘Grrls’ with a lyric change. This is a result of me listening and taking action. As an influential artist, I’m dedicated to being a part of the change I’ve been wanting to see.”