Karen. It’s no long just the name of your colleague, family member or friend. But in recent years, it’s become a term to describe a white privileged woman who demands to “speak to the manager” in order to complain about anything and everything.
It’s become a norm in daily conversation to say “stop being such a Karen” or “that’s such a Karen thing to do” – the memes are abundant.
There’s even a ‘Karen haircut’, one that many are avoiding as The Trend Spotter notes, showcasing an inverted bob or A-line cut that’s always longer in the front and short in the back.
Here are some of the memes floating around social media:
— floridasun123 (@floridasun1234) May 28, 2020
— datecardpodcast (@datecardpodcast) October 27, 2020
— Grumpy-TG 🏳️⚧️ 🔞 (@thegrumpytg) February 20, 2020
— Karyn Pinter (@karynnickels) February 26, 2020
— .word (@dotword_Offical) June 30, 2020
The reality is that there are thousands of women who are affected by this negative stigma, purely by having the name Karen. One Twitter user was quick to point out how women are now changing their name because of the “abuse” and “trolling”:
Did you know that woman named #Karen have had to change their names on social media for fear of terrible abuse & trolling? They’ve had their photos stolen so they can be mocked & ridiculed. This is what the meme has done. #MentalHealthAwareness #karenisaname
— Not In Our Name – Karen (@NotInOurName3) May 11, 2021
A group of Karens have united through Facebook group called ‘Karens United’ which consists of almost 2 000 women. Their aim is to push back against the stigma attached to their name while asking people to be nicer to one another, as Independent notes.
According to UNILAD, one member in the private Facebook group told a news network that the poor reputation attached to the name doesn’t make her feel better about her own name, adding that the “real Karens”, are “pretty nice people”.
On the group, Karens who are tired of seeing their name associated with offensive memes are encouraged to unite in order to clap back.