One U.S. city is taking to task middle-aged white women who cry wolf or meddle in everyone else’s business. Street slang calls these horrid women “Karen.” And San Francisco has put a target on their backs with the latest in feel-good legislation: Caution Against Racial and Exploitative Non-Emergencies Act, or CAREN. From the urban jungle with a dedicated human feces patrol, what else would you possibly expect?
It appears that the local city government is cheesed off with white people – men included – for calling the emergency dispatchers at 911 to tattle about people of color they find menacing or offensive. San Francisco Supervisor Shamann Walton is the brainchild behind the legislation and introduced it by saying, “911 calls and emergency reports are not customer service lines for racist behavior.”
But is the potential law racist, or finally a time that has come? Oh, Lord, yes, we’re going there, like it or not.
Karen? Heck No, Amy!
The new hate-crime legislation consists of two parts pander, one part woke, and one part punitive, half-baked into an inedible middle-class casserole. So the recipe includes pandering to Black Lives Matter and riots du jour, leading as a blue state paving the way for equality, and smacking down “privileged” people who happen to be Caucasian in the process. How delish.
Understandably, 911 calls to report that a person of color is annoying, occupying tables at a coffee shop chain, or bird watching in your neighborhood is a waste of emergency response resources. And perhaps San Franciscans should collectively thank or blame a handful of paranoid, hysterical folks nationwide for this latest overreaction and overstepping by their local government.
The year 2020 has brought into the limelight several perpetrators of excessive calls to 911 dispatchers. Amy Cooper lost her ever-loving mind in a Manhattan, NY, park when a gentleman of color asked her to leash her dog. She called the police and cried “he threatened me” wolf. She made two such calls, and now New York has a new law that allows people to sue for having the police called for “no reason.” Yes, Amy could be considered a Karen.
Another incident involved James Juanillo caught stenciling BLM in yellow washable chalk on his own house in the City by the Bay. A pale middle-aged couple out for a stroll jumped to conclusions and demanded to know if he was defacing private property. Juanillo is in favor of the new city edict, saying, “It was me calmly applying chalk, not spray paint, not in the middle of the night, but very deliberately. The only thing that was missing was a pinot grigio.”
It seems several folks could use a belt of a good pinot during these crazy dwindling days of 2020.
Why Is This CAREN a Bad Thing?
As knee-jerk reactions go, San Fran’s CAREN law is a doozy. First, a lot of real Karens are pissed and have loudly complained to the board to change not the law but the name, claiming it is sexist, ageist, derogatory, and racist. Hard to embrace that recipe if one is woke.
The supervisors have observed in the law that people of color suing white folks for calling the police could be seen as an incentive to engage in some form of hostility to reap financial benefits. That could become something of a full-time job for an enterprising thug. And the other side of the coin is this type of law, with the threat of punitive damages on the books, may deter people from calling 911 for real crimes and emergencies. And that is no es Bueno.
One might ask why the supervisors stopped at CAREN? Is it just that much more fun to degrade the white woman than to apply the acronym CARENA correctly? Or does the use of a final “A” give it a more Latin-sounding flair? Just a question from a nosy middle-aged white woman.
Read more from Sarah Cowgill.