Barbie Bassett fired for Snoop Dogg lyrics (Image courtesy of Fox News)

A longtime Mississippi news anchor was removed from the WLBT channel after saying the words “fo shizzle, my nizzle” on air. The catchphrase was popularized by rapper Snoop Dogg and is used in a friendly context. However, the lyrics do have a racial connotation which the show host Barbie Bassett seems to have overlooked and used it jokingly.

However, this is not the first time that the white news anchor has landed in trouble after racially insensitive remarks. In October 2022, Barbie Bassett had used the word “grandmammy”, an old slave term. She followed up with an apology for being unaware of the history around it. But this time, there is only silence from both the anchor as well as the news channel that seems to have fired her without notice.

Exploring the incident that led to Barbie Bassett quoting Snoop Dogg lyrics on air

Barbie Bassett had been a longtime employee of NBC’s affiliate WLBT station. In her last appearance on the channel’s morning show, the anchor and her colleagues were discussing Snoop Dogg’s line of wines, Snoop Cali Blanc, and joked about getting a Snoop-inspired tattoo. 

This was the moment when Barbie Bassett decided to utter a catchphrase from the rapper’s 2000 single Snoop Dogg (What’s My Name Pt. 2). The anchor casually says “fo shizzle, my nizzle” in true hip-hop fashion but we can see one of her colleagues visibly shocked. The viral clip has been making rounds on social media as a moment that ended Barbie Bassett’s career. 

Since then, the news anchor has not returned to the WLBT station. The NBC affiliate channel has not commented on her absence. The event has caused mixed reactions on social media.

What does “fo shizzle, my nizzle” mean and why is it offensive?

The Snoop Dogg catchphrase “fo shizzle, my nizzle” can be translated to mean “for sure, my friend” or “absolutely, my buddy.” However, the use of the racial slur in the original phrase is considered offensive and should not be used.

Snoop Dogg lyrics news anchor for shizzle my nizzle barbie bassett mississippi
Snoop Dogg (Image courtesy of GQ)

It is a variation of the phrase “for sure, my n—”. The -izzle sound and the n-word make up a slang known as izzle-speak. Izzle speak is often associated with hip-hop culture and was popularized by rappers such as Snoop Dogg and Ludacris, who frequently used the slang in their lyrics.

Reactions to the Mississippi news anchor’s removal from channel

All the initial reactions towards Barbie Bassett quoting Snoop Dogg lyrics on air were mostly negative. The catchphrase’s racial connotation was too significant for the news anchor to ignore. However, after her departure from the show, she has received some support. This comes from social media users as well as some influential black celebrities. 

Charlamagne Tha God went on The Breakfast Club to talk about how it’s not really fair to fire someone for just quoting lyrics that are not directly explicit. Whoopi Goldberg commented on the issue on The View and came to the news anchor’s defense. 

Snoop Dogg is yet to comment on the Barbie Bassett controversy and the Mississippi news anchor awaits the same.

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