Community activists have voiced serious concerns about the popularity of the ‘Karen’ meme as being inappropriately misogynist and racist. And they are right to voice these objections.
Karens are middle-aged white women who utilise their privilege to get what they want. For instance, these ladies might post on Nextdoor about a black family grilling in a park or demand that stores let her in without wearing masks.
1. Don’t take it personally
“Karen” is a derogatory label often applied to women who engage in behavior perceived as racist or privileged. The name often applies to middle-aged white women who frequently complain, insult, demand things of others and use white privilege to avoid punishment for their actions. Karens can often be recognized by their hatred towards people from various ethnicities while remaining unaware of their own racism due to living a comfortable existence sheltered from interaction with diverse communities.
“Karen” first gained notoriety on social media in 2017 before reaching its pinnacle of notoriety with Netflix’s popular series My Mom, Your Dad in 2020. The show follows Karen who acts in accordance with stereotypes associated with Karens: driving minivans in suburbia with short bob cuts while insisting she speak to managers and possessing an asymmetrical chin.
As many viewers can identify with Karen from the show, her character has quickly become a cultural phenomenon and meme. Some even use it to challenge casual bias against women of color in everyday interactions and in society at large. Furthermore, the meme serves as an interesting reflection of power relations: historically less-powerful individuals define what constitutes “normality” while the powerful can use this tool as a tool against them by creating such normative images as “Karen.”
Although Karen is commonly used to disparage middle-aged white women, it can also refer to men who act similarly and behave racist or offensive. Such people are known as Kens and often come off as overbearing; for example a Ken may object when store employees ask him to remove a Black Lives Matter sign because it offends his children.
If your mother is Karen, it’s important not to take her comments personally and instead try to understand her behavior and learn from any mistakes that she makes. Doing this may allow you to alter her behaviour for the better and create change for both of you.
2. Don’t be afraid to say no
Karen moms are typically middle-aged women who exhibit aggressive, offensive and entitled behavior. They use their privilege to police others’ behaviors – particularly if their views are racist. If you know a Karen, it is essential that when her behavior becomes abusive or dangerous that you speak up – though do so in an effective and respectful manner; be firm when telling her she must change.
The term “Karen” first emerged from black internet culture, but has since evolved into a pejorative used to refer to women who act rudely or hold racist views. Additionally, it refers to white women who act entitled or make others feel inferior; typical traits for Karens include possessing a bob haircut and feeling entitled. Furthermore, Karens often complain about minor inconveniences believing they are victims.
Recently, Karen videos have become increasingly popular on social media platforms. These videos often depict middle-aged women lamenting minor inconveniences or alleging they are victims of others; online users have coined this phenomenon “Karen-ism”.
Popular examples of Karen videos include one where a woman in New York City’s Central Park called the police on a black birdwatcher who she claimed was illegally trespassing onto her property and claimed was violating her privacy. This video soon went viral online users quickly labeled it as an example of Karen videos.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that joining in the mob of online users who are responding negatively to these Karen videos won’t actually do anyone any good; these videos only serve to fuel stereotypes about women while showing how people use racism, sexism and other forms of oppression to manipulate others.
As someone living with Karenism, it is vital that you learn to say no. Being able to say no allows you to fulfill God’s calling on your life while leaving the rest in His hands.
3. Don’t be afraid to ask for help
Have you come across Karen? Karen is a popular term in memes, viral videos and TikTok posts to describe pushy white women who insist on getting their way no matter what. While this term can be taken as offensive by some people, it can also serve as a helpful way of identifying people who have become toxic in your life or work environment – for instance mothers, friends and coworkers who use their privilege to bully others into complying with their demands can all fall under its purview.
Although Karens can be irritating, their more serious offenses such as microaggressions and racism can be hazardous and damaging to others, particularly people of color who often find themselves targeted by these women for their discriminatory and inconsiderate actions.
Karens have become notoriously well-known for their behavior such as her famous “Speak to the Manager” moment and calling police on someone birdwatching in Central Park. Although these women can be of any age, most typically middle aged females behave in this manner and act like entitled brats.
Asserting that their behavior is inappropriate can help limit its influence. But when speaking with Karen it’s essential that your tone remains firm but respectful when communicating. When approaching them it is also key that any interaction doesn’t become personal when discussing this matter with them.
Dani Weller, customer service team leader for Bionic, advises staying calm and explaining the situation without becoming emotional. Furthermore, keeping records of their behavior allows you to document any unprofessionalism or toxicity displayed by them.
If you find yourself regularly dealing with someone like Karen, here are a few strategies to keep calm and avoid her antagonism from negatively affecting your life or relationships. Remember – if their behaviour becomes dangerous or disruptive don’t hesitate to speak up – in a calm yet firm manner of course; they shouldn’t use you or your children as their shield!
4. Don’t be afraid to ask for forgiveness
Kelly became infected with Karenism virus. This process takes seven days and ultimately transforms an individual into a middle-aged Entitled Karen woman. Kelly noticed this change as soon as she awoke one morning with the letter K on her shoulder – feeling it begin its work within.
Soon enough, she began acting like her mother by demanding things and being angry over minor indignities. She even started complaining about coworkers. Friends warned her against this path toward becoming another Karen but it didn’t matter; before long her coworkers got tired of dealing with her behavior and quit or reported it to HR about it all, which caused HR to investigate further.
The word “Karen” has become an insulting term used to characterize white women who use their privilege to gain advantage over those they encounter, often by calling the police on people of color and reserving parking spots for themselves. Additionally, Karens believe they deserve special treatment and often hold strong views regarding this issue – many times accused of racism but always denied such charges with great vehemence.
Remembering not all Karens are bad can help you avoid being provoked by their actions, even if some appear rude or inconsiderate. Therefore it is crucial that we treat them with the respect and kindness they deserve; understanding their perspectives will enable us to avoid becoming emotionally provoked by them.
Karenism is a form of narcissism which emphasizes self-interest at the expense of others and often associated with an absence of empathy and need to control situations. People suffering from narcissistic personality disorder can sometimes also display this characteristic trait.
Karens can be difficult to deal with, but there are ways of dealing with them successfully. Remember that they’re not evil and can be treated successfully through therapy sessions; so don’t be shy about asking for forgiveness from any Karens if their behavior has caused pain to you or someone else.