What’s in a name? Well, a lot, if the name is Karen. While baby names generally do not show a dramatic movement in their popularity, the latest data from the Social Security Administration in the USA features a special case. According to a HuffPost report, baby name Karen saw a steep fall in its popularity in 2020.
‘Karen’ fell 171 spots on the list of most common newborn baby names for girls in America. From its previous ranking of 660 in 2019, the name has now dropped to 831, the lowest since the year 1927.This trend in fall of its popularity comes after the high-profile story of ‘Central Park Karen’. The woman went viral for calling the police on a black man in New York’s Central Park on May 2020. While Karen was not the original name of the women seen in the viral video, the name has since been used as a term for people –especially white women –who are entitled, demanding, or reliant on their white privilege.
Last year, only 325 newborn babies were named Karen, while at the peak of its popularity in 1965, there were nearly 33,000 newborn Karens.
Interestingly, the drop in the popularity of Karen has coincided with the decrease in popularity of the boy name Chad, which is often considered the male equivalent of this name.
Meanwhile, the top position of this ranking of names was unchanged after ‘Liam’ was declared number one for the fifth consecutive year. Additionally, Olivia was ranked as the most popular girl name for the second year in a row.
According to New York Post, the name Kobe witnessed a 175 percent jump in its popularity after the death of NBA star in a helicopter crash last year. The name ‘Kamala’ also became popular by 104 per cent after US Vice President Kamala Harris was elected to office last year in November.