Entitled and racist white women, branded as ‘Karens’, have been running amok and research has shown California and New York are leading the way in the incidents that often go viral.
One out 4 ‘Karen’ incidents that took place these past few years occurred in California or New York, BeenVerified reports in a recent analysis. The background check company compiled data from 150 incidents from January 2018 to July of this year where white women called police on people of color for reasons that fell short of actual crimes. The purpose of the analysis was to determine which states and environments these incidents were most likely to occur.
California totaled 27 incidents and New York 16. Georgia and North Carolina both accounted for eight while Florida and Ohio had six. Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Tennessee, Maryland, and Texas registered five or less.
Richard Gargan, a spokesman for BeenVerified, believes that the two most populous states are hotspots for reasons other than just their size.
“Because California and New York are also both the media capitals of the nation—and perhaps home to more social media influencers—it could be incidents in these states have an outsized chance of being picked up and widely reported,” Gargan said.
In addition to California and New York being at the forefront of often viral encounters, BeenVerified also drew other conclusions. Twenty percent of these incidents took place in stores, 19% in neighborhoods, and 13% in the street.
And 7% of those who were on the receiving end of phone calls to the cops couldn’t even feel safe in their homes as Black people were also harassed where they lived.
“The common thread through all these incidents are people making false assumptions based on race, or taking advantage of those assumptions to make false claims to authorities,” Gargan said.
There’s been ‘Permit Karen,’ ‘Trader Joe Karen,’ and a ‘Michigan Karen‘ with a gun that threatened to shoot a Black woman and her daughters. Each instance went viral and aside from a few days of social media infamy, very few of these women faced legal repercussions.
However, the tide has begun to change in terms of holding those who make false 911 calls accountable.
As theGrio previously reported, Amy Cooper was charged in June with calling the police on a Black bird watcher and falsely reporting that he threatened her over the Memorial Day weekend in New York’s Central Park. She was quickly dubbed as ‘Central Park Karen’ when her interaction with a Black man, Christian Cooper, went viral.
Jillian Wuestenberg, 32, and Eric Wuestenberg, 42, were also charged by prosecutors in Michigan with felonious assault for pointing a gun at Takelia Hill and her daughter Makayla Green.
In San Francisco, city supervisor Shamann Walton brought forth the Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies Act otherwise known as the CAREN Act.
“The CAREN Act will make it unlawful for an individual to contact law enforcement solely to discriminate on the basis of a person’s race, ethnicity, religious affiliation, gender, sexual orientation, or gender identity,” Walton said in July.
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