The first time lifestyle journalist Karen LeBlanc was shown a “Karen” meme centered on the coronavirus, she freaked out a little.
LeBlanc, who’s the host of GenXtra, a lifestyle show for Generation X, said her 15-year-old showed her a collage of white women, all sporting Kate Gosselin’s now-iconic reverse mullet and self-righteous smirks.
“The Karenovirus is responsible for 3 managers being fired this month alone,” the caption read.
In the earliest incarnation of the Karen memes, a Karen (or a Stacey or Becky) was a pushy, coupon-loving, entitled, middle-class white woman who, in the face of even the slightest inconvenience at a store or restaurant, would very much like to speak to the manager.
But as LeBlanc learned, today’s Karens contain multitudes: Now, Karen has a decidedly conservative political viewpoint. She distrusts science (and Dr. Anthony Fauci) and won’t wear a mask in public. Worse, she weaponizes her whiteness by