A popular Mississippi news anchor was quietly fired this month after after quoting rapper Snoop Dogg during a broadcast. WLBT-TV anchor and meteorologist Barbie Bassett, who is white, was engaging in on-set banter about Snoop Dogg’s latest California wine product, Snoop Cali Blanc, on March 8 when she blurted out “Fo shizzle, my nizzle.” Bassett had been with the top-rated NBC affiliate in Jackson WLBT for over twenty years.
Barbie Bassett, image via Twitter avatar.
“My nizzle” is apparently a slang take on the n-word that has become another rap lyric only some people are allowed to quote in public while others get their lives turned upside down.
"Fo shizzle, my [epithet]."
(she was fired for this)https://t.co/xZmBveSp9T pic.twitter.com/d5US9Hu3g5
— I,Hypocrite (@lporiginalg) March 25, 2023
Last fall, Bassett apologized after saying “grand mammy” on air when talking to Black reporter Carmen Poe.
“Last Friday on our newscast ‘Today at 11’, I used a term that was offensive to many in our audience and to my coworkers here at WLBT. Though not intentional, I now understand how my comment was both insensitive and hurtful. I have apologized to Carmen Poe.
Now, I would like to apologize to you. That is not the heart of who I am. And for that, I humbly ask for your forgiveness and I apologize to everyone I have offended. I will learn from this and participate in training so I can better understand our history and our people.
I can’t mend the hurt my comment caused. I pray you’ll forgive me and that you’ll extend grace through this awful mistake.”
The Vicksburg Daily News broke the story of Bassett’s firing last Tuesday and included video of the “grand mammy” incident (excerpt):
Barbie Bassett, news anchor for WLBT has been absent from the public eye lately, causing speculation about her current status in the news industry. Vicksburg Daily News reached out to a source at WLBT who confirmed Bassett is no longer with the station.
In October 2022, Bassett made a comment on the air that viewers took offense to, citing its racial overtones.
Excerpt from Bassett’s bio at her personal website (which has scrubbed all but one mention of WLBT):
Originally from Marks, Mississippi, Barbie was reared on a farm as the last of four children.
Barbie graduated from Mississippi College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications. She received a Master of Science degree from Mississippi State University with concentration in Broadcast Meteorology.
Barbie has been granted the Seal of Approval from the American Meteorological Society and has been awarded “Best Weathercast” by the Associated Press several times. She was WLBT’s first chief meteorologist in its 50+ year history.
Barbie won the 2000 Mrs. Mississippi International title. At the Mrs. International pageant, she was named a semi-finalist in the Top 15 as she competed against women from all over the world. She has held four state beauty pageant titles and one national title over the years. Barbie is an accomplished opera singer, ventriloquist, pianist, and model.
Barbie sits on the Boards of Directors for the Mississippi Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Foundation and the Christmas Village. Additionally, she is on the Advisory Council for the Madison-Ridgeland Junior Auxiliary and a graduate of Leadership Mississippi. She is Vice President of the American Meteorological Society Jackson Chapter, teaches two-year-olds in Sunday school and sings on the Praise Team at Colonial Heights Baptist Church, a Life Member of the Madison-Ridgeland Junior Auxiliary, and is a member of the Junior League of Jackson.
…She’s written two best sellers: “Forecasts & Faith: 5 Keys to Weathering the Storms of Life” and “Carry An Umbrella When There’s No Rain in the Forecast”.
In her spare time, she enjoys storm chasing, collecting Barbie Dolls, spending time on the family farm and homeschooling her children Grace, Will Christian, and Lilly Faith.
Bassett’s Twitter account has been inactive since March 14. Her Facebook account was last active March 8.