Jay-Z Supposedly Drops "Bitch" from Future Lyrics in Honor of Daughter Blue Ivy

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
Jan. 17 2012 2:15 PM

New Dad Jay-Z Decommissions the Word "Bitch" (Maybe)

136295548
Is Jay-Z changing his tune on the word "bitch"?

Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Jay-Z will purge the word “bitch” from his future lyrics, if a poem dedicated to his week-old daughter Blue Ivy Carter (and scooped by the British music site NME) is to be believed.

Katy Waldman Katy Waldman

Katy Waldman is a Slate staff writer. 

"Before I got in the game, made a change, and got rich/I didn’t think hard about using the word bitch/I rapped, I flipped it, I sold it, I lived it/Now with my daughter in this world I curse those that give it," the rapper allegedly wrote.

Advertisement

The verse continues, “I never realized while on the fast track that I'd give riddance to the word bitch/To leave her innocence intact/No man will degrade her, or call her name/Forever young you may pass/Blue Ivy Carter, my angel."

That the rhymes first leaked from across the Atlantic got us wondering about their veracity—since when do the Brits have a direct pipeline to the Knowles-Carter household? Fans have cried forgery: They’re convinced their Jay would never drop “bitch” from his vocabulary, especially since the word practically vaulted him to fame (see “99 Problems,” “Bitches & Sisters”). Further raising eyebrows, there’s no trace of the poem on Jay-Z’s blog Life + Times or in press releases from the new parents. And a few Jay-Z connoisseurs at Double X think the clip doesn’t read like the rapper’s voice.  

So—if the skeptics are right and Hova does not actually intend to abandon the B-bomb—things are about to get a little awkward for the music star.

If they’re wrong, though, we may be witnessing a watershed moment. Will Jay-Z’s fellow rap laureates, especially protégé Kanye West, also banish the B-word? Will the notoriously misogynistic Eminem? (He’s made feints toward mending his angry ways after kicking a drug addiction.) Will Lil Wayne eschew the word “bootie” unless it refers to baby footwear?

If the poem is real, we want to commend Jay-Z on his newfound respect for women (although we wonder—along with NY Mag—why Beyoncé, his wife of three years, didn’t inspire the same gesture earlier). In that case, some final questions remain: Where is the new father, presumably swamped in night shifts and dirty diapers, finding time to pen all these songs and statements?

And while he’s at it, can he maybe do something about “ho”?

TODAY IN SLATE

Culturebox

The End of Pregnancy

And the inevitable rise of the artificial womb.

Doctor Tests Positive for Ebola in New York City

How a Company You’ve Never Heard of Took Control of the Entire Porn Industry

The Hot New Strategy for Desperate Democrats

Blame China for everything.

The Questions That Michael Brown’s Autopsies Can’t Answer

Foreigners

Kiev Used to Be an Easygoing Place

Now it’s descending into madness.

Technology

Don’t Just Sit There

How to be more productive during your commute.

There Has Never Been a Comic Book Character Like John Constantine

Which Came First, the Word Chicken or the Word Egg?

  News & Politics
The Slate Quiz
Oct. 24 2014 12:10 AM Play the Slate News Quiz With Jeopardy! superchampion Ken Jennings.
  Business
Moneybox
Oct. 23 2014 5:53 PM Amazon Investors Suddenly Bearish on Losing Money
  Life
Outward
Oct. 23 2014 5:08 PM Why Is an Obscure 1968 Documentary in the Opening Credits of Transparent?
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 23 2014 11:33 AM Watch Little Princesses Curse for the Feminist Cause
  Slate Plus
Working
Oct. 23 2014 11:28 AM Slate’s Working Podcast: Episode 2 Transcript Read what David Plotz asked Dr. Meri Kolbrener about her workday.
  Arts
Brow Beat
Oct. 23 2014 6:55 PM A Goodfellas Actor Sued The Simpsons for Stealing His Likeness. Does He Have a Case?
  Technology
Technology
Oct. 23 2014 11:47 PM Don’t Just Sit There How to be more productive during your commute.
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 24 2014 7:00 AM Gallery: The Partial Solar Eclipse of October 2014
  Sports
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.