White Anchors Should Know Not to Use “My Nizzle”

Michael Arceneaux
4 min readMar 29

Barbie Bassett may have meant no harm by her now viral mistake, but she should have known better by now.

Photo: @BarbieBassettTV/Twitter

In 2022, Barbie Bassett, an anchor for the NBC affiliate WLBT in Jackson, Mississippi, issued an apology after referring to a Black reporter’s “grandmammy” while on air.

“But Carmen … girl … sis,” Bassett said in the on air comments that drew controversy. “I know you well enough to know that those guys working behind you, they probably know who the celebrity Gameday figure is, so you need to go swing by the Krogers, get you a chocolate pie … and you need to go offering it to some of those guys working behind you and see if you can get the scoop from one of those in return. I know your mother or your grandmammy got some type of a recipe that you can whip up. Don’t you think? Take it to them?”

After presumably being told she sounded mighty racist and confederate for using “mammy,” Bassett offered an apology:

“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 pray you’ll forgive me and that you’ll extend grace through this awful mistake.”

Unfortunately for her, it does not seem Bassett has done enough training because earlier this month, she drew new controversy for comments she made while discussing Snoop Dogg’s 19 Crimes wine collection.

When one of her co-anchors suggested that Snoop get a wine collaboration going with one of their coworkers, “Julie,” Barbie enthusiastically agreed, and when the co-anchor suggested that Julie get a Snoop Dogg tattoo, Bassett replied, “Fo shizzle, my nizzle” live on television.

Bassett has been absent from the public ever since, and after causing speculation about her current employee status with the station, Vicksburg Daily News confirmed with a source at WBLT that Bassett is no longer with the station.

Bassett has found supporters in two powerful Black media personalities: Whoopi Goldberg and Charlamagne Tha God.

Each has spoken out in defense of a Mississippi news anchor and meteorologist.

Michael Arceneaux

New York Times bestselling author of “I Can’t Date Jesus” and “I Don’t Want To Die Poor.”