Just so we’re all immediately on the same page: We can totally assume what Tiger King’s Carole Baskin was attempting to accomplish when she weirdly weighed in on Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s video for “WAP” earlier this week. If our juggernaut of a Netflix docuseries managed to earn us more attention then we could ever fathom, we too would probably consider riding today’s biggest social media wave to reclaim some of that fervent attention for ourselves. But Baskin’s claims that the duo’s appearance alongside various leopards and tigers “glamorized” the ownership of big cats and that “they probably dealt with one of the big cat pimps” were so rife with conjecture that we moved right past them.
And we were perfectly fine with ignoring Baskin’s commentary for the rest of our days—that is, until Cardi B was asked to address the comments herself. In an interview with Vice’s Roisin Lanigan, the rapper remained appropriately unbothered by the emphatically negative criticisms from conservatives. “It doesn’t make me angry,”Cardi told Lanigan. “It makes me happy. They keep talking and the numbers keep going up. At the end of the day, whatever they’re saying, the numbers speak for themselves.” When she was eventually asked about her thoughts on Baskin’s critique, Cardi gave a rather finite response: “I’m not gonna engage with Carole Baskin on that. Like, that’s just ridiculous you know? Oh, Lord. Like, girl you killed your goddamn husband.”
For clarity’s sake, Baskin was not formally charged for the disappearance of millionaire Don Lewis, nor is she currently being investigated for it despite the Hillsborough County sheriff’s apparent interest in new leads. But Cardi’s response does succinctly touch on Baskin’s arguably biggest claim to fame, which makes any public pearl-clutching on her part a little laughable for a while, at least. Hopefully everyone will soon learn that it’s perfectly fine to simply not like— and even critique!—the song without accusing the women behind it of harm.