I feel sorry for all my friends named Karen. I’ve always liked the name and even considered (briefly) naming child#2 Karen except he ended up being son#2 so that name was out. But back to Karen. When I first heard Karen used as a descriptor it was, according to the Urban Dictionary, specifically: a pejorative term used in the United States and other English-speaking countries for a woman perceived as entitled or demanding beyond the scope of what is appropriate or necessary. A common stereotype is that of a white woman who uses her privilege to demand her own way at the expense of others. Karen was generally portrayed as having a blonde bob haircut, asking to speak to retail and restaurant managers to voice complaints or make demands, and being an anti-vaxx , Generation X soccer mom.
Then it started to change and was soon applied to all white women engaging in what was considered racist acts. And now? Now anytime a woman asserts herself, whether appropriately or not, she is labeled a Karen. In fact it is now applied to any woman for any reason as an insult! Why am I even bringing this up? Because I was called a “Karen”. I was paying for my purchase at Goodwill. I was using “Goody Bucks” which are in store credit. A manager is required to enter a code. The cashier paged the manager and the transaction was completed. It took all of a few more seconds. However the young man behind me was very impatient. When the girl called the manager on the intercom he muttered “Karen” just loud enough to be heard by me and several others in line. I pretended not to hear him. I had a pleasant exchange with the young lady at the cash register and left smiling. Surely this was an anomaly. Nope. I went to the grocery and the cashier rang up my pears as grapes (pears were $0.88 a pound and grapes were $1.19). I pointed out the error and she corrected it… The couple behind me were giving me the stink eye and when I looked their direction they glared at me. As I was moving away, they commented to the cashier that “It must be so hard dealing with all the Karens”! Really? I’m a Karen?! I suspect that it is much easier to label all women who pose an inconvenience to you personally as Karen than to take responsibility for holding yourself in check.
Keep your attitude and tongue in check
Airing grievances or slights perceived
Remember we are all human
Equal in the eyes of God if not man
Never forget “There but for the grace of God go I”
A little Acrostic poem to remind us to be nice and have a little compassion for our fellow humans – both man and woman!