Black woman named Karen perfectly explains why ‘Karen’ isn't a slur

If you’re on social media – especially Twitter – you’ve probably read about the Karen discourse, or at least seen people refer to others as “Karen” even if that might not be their actual name.

It’s unknown where the term came from but it’s meaning is crystal clear – it is largely used as shorthand for a middle-aged white woman who is privileged, snobby and possibly a bit racist.

Essentially, Karen is big “I’d like to speak to your manager” energy.

It has been used in recent months to call out a myriad of things, including women calling the cops on Black men, road rage incidents (“Kidz Bop Karen” being the most infamous example) and even a police officer not getting her McDonald’s order promptly.

But is it a slur?

Well, according to Karen Attiah – who is a Black woman with the name – no, it’s not.

She took to Twitter on Tuesday evening to share her thoughts:

Breaking it all down, Attiah followed her tweet up with her reasons why, including countlessly being called the N-word, receiving death threats and rape threats – all for simply “writing about racism”.

In fact, Attiah wrote an article about using the word as an “analysis about gender and race”.

If you want to learn more about the term, indy100 did a deep-dive into it, exploring issues of gender, race, class and age.

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