What is the real meaning of Beyoncé’s “America Has a Problem”? Here’s what we think

July 29th is Beyoncé album release day, so bring in all your Beyhive puns formation. Long dubbed a 16-track dance fest, Beyoncé recorded “Renaissance” during the COVID-19 pandemic and told fans in an Instagram post in June that “it has allowed me to feel free and adventurous at a time when where there was hardly anything else are moving.”

From “Renaissance’s” first single, “Break My Soul,” it was clear that the album would thematically focus on what Beyoncé sings best about – self-love. The mid-tempo bop with an R&B twist even garnered public praise from former First Lady Michelle Obama on Twitter. “Queen Beyoncé, you did it again! ‘Break My Soul’ is the song we all need right now and I can’t help but dance and sing along while I hear it,” Obama said raved. Likewise, another track, “Cozy,” is a love letter to Beyoncé’s LGBTQIA+ fandom. Sampling trans personality Ts Madison’s “B***h I’m Black,” per GAY TIMES, Beyoncé rattles off a powerful litany of similes throughout the disco-flavored dance track, utilizing all the colors of the Pride Flag . “Black like love too deep… Green eyes envy me / Paint the world p***y pink / Blue like the soul I’ve crowned / Purple drank and couture dresses” (and so on), she sings, per Genius .

However, many were particularly curious about one track on “Renaissance” – the strictly titled “America Has a Problem”. However, after listening, many will find that the jam is not what they expected.

America has a problem — and it’s Beyoncé’s bad self

With a title like “America Has a Problem,” track 14 from Beyoncé’s album Renaissance is bound to touch on some heavy socio-political issues, right? Color us in shock when a few seconds into the song’s militant drumbeat Queen Bey starts singing about it (and only about it) how she wants it receive Low. (“Pray that your love is deep for me / I make you weak for me / Make you wait for me a whole week” is just a sampling of the first verse of Genius.) On the song’s blunt chorus (sporty lines like “I know you see these rack-rack-racks on me / Now come and get hi-iiii-igh”), Beyoncé even raps in a Dua Lipa-esque way.

“Renaissance,” as Beyoncé’s June Instagram post shared with fans, was an opportunity for her to inspire fans to “let go of the jiggling…and feel as unique, powerful, and sexy as you are.” No song on “Renaissance” embodies this more than “America Has a Problem”.

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And despite Beyoncé’s seemingly subversive message, her song’s title comes from Kilo Ali’s 1990 track “Cocaine (America Has a Problem),” which addressed a pressing socio-political issue at the time. No drug references in Beyoncé’s work, but perhaps the non-political lyrics are her own protest against an overly political world? Is she telling the rest of us to loosen up, come in the moment and feel ourselves?

Beyoncé appeared to fool fans with the caption, “America has a problem.”

Needless to say, “America Has a Problem” wasn’t what fans expected. “‘America has a problem,’ OH MOTHER HAS SOMETHING TO SAY,” said one fan speculated on twitter. wrote. Another user even preemptively written down the “New Grammy Awards Category for 2023 ‘Best Song for Social Change'” and hopefully wrote, “America Has a Problem got it in the POCKET!”

In anticipation of a protest anthem, fans instead got a lewd and ebullient track about self-love. Everyone was shocked, with some loving Beyoncés subverting their expectations and some less. “The fact that we all thought, ‘America has a problem,’ was political when Beyoncé was basically saying … ‘I’m the worst b***h in America, and I’m THE problem!'” A fan tweeted. An angry fan wrote“How can a song called ‘America Has A Problem’ have the lyrics ‘that booty gon’ what he wants’… I thought this track was about George Floyd.”

Fans can be forgiven for their preconceptions about America Has a Problem; Beyoncé has never shied away from political messages. Their 2016 single “Formation” Lemonade kicked off what Beyhive labeled the singer’s “Montgomery Bus Boycott Era”. With the music video for “Formation” featuring references to the Hurricane Katrina and Black Lives Matter protests, the song’s lyrical call for solidarity with black women garnered critical and fan acclaim. At least one lesson is clear from all of this — it’s Beyoncé’s world and we only live in it.