Internet commenters were appalled after one woman described her husband’s reaction to a reckless driver nearly striking their kids and dog.
In a viral Reddit post published in r/AmITheA**hole, Redditor u/Puzzlehead_Gate562 (otherwise referred to as the original poster, or OP) said she turned the driver in to the authorities, but was reprimanded and insulted by her husband for doing so.
Titled, “[Am I the a**hole] for chastising and calling the police on a woman for driving through a field my kids were playing in?” the now-deleted post received more than 7,500 votes in less than eight hours.
Writing that her two young children were playing ball while she was working on training the family’s dog, the original poster said she was stunned when she saw a sport utility vehicle speeding straight at the group.
“A woman in an SUV hops the curb and speeds right past us about 6 feet from the kids,” she wrote. “One of the kids made a startled sounds and [the dog], being really protective…charged the car.”
“She just kept driving,” the original poster added.
Explaining that much of the skin on her hands was burned off by her dog’s leash when it chased the car, the original poster said she brought her kids inside before confronting the reckless driver, who had stopped at the edge of the field the children were playing in.
“When she stopped I went to her passenger side window and told her she nearly ran over my kids and my dog,” she wrote. “She didn’t seem to care so I kept on, I told her it’s a field not a roadway and asked her if it was her property.”
“She said no she just didn’t want to have to walk and she’ll drive how she wants,” the original poster continued. “I went inside and called the police. I gave them her license plate number, explained what happened and showed them the footage from our security cameras.”
Despite her vigilance and protectiveness over her children and dog, however, the original poster said her husband disagreed with how she handled the scary situation.
“My husband said I was being a ‘Karen,'” she wrote. “Several of my fingers are missing most of the skin around the first two joints. I can’t bend them. Half centimeter high blisters are forming and it hurts like hell.”
“But still, he calls me a Karen saying that I was just being over dramatic,” the original poster added.
The Karen label, often used in viral internet posts and memes, is “a pejorative slang term for an obnoxious, angry, entitled, and often racist middle-aged white woman who uses her privilege to get her way or police other people’s behaviors,” according to Dictionary.com.
Initially reserved for disgruntled restaurant patrons and furious retail customers who’d settle for nothing less than speaking to an establishment’s manager, the last two years have seen the label transform into a flashpoint within the cancel culture lexicon.
In the last year alone, Newsweek has reported on numerous instances of “Karens” wreaking havoc by accusing a child from stealing from Walmart, unleashing scathing anti-mask rants on grocery store employees and assaulting a maintenance worker who was simply trying to do his job.
However, while The New York Times reported in 2020 that Karens now roam “restaurants and stores…spewing venom and calling the authorities to tattle,” many commenters responding to the original poster were adamant that her behavior did not align with the Karen label, and that her husband was out of line for nonchalantly accusing her of causing unnecessary drama.
In the post’s top comment, which has received nearly 8,000 votes, Redditor u/Trixi-applecreek assured the original post their reaction was justified while taking aim at both her husband and the speeding driver.
“[Not the a**hole],” they wrote. “But your husband is. So is the driver.”
Redditor u/sugarintheboots, whose response has received more than 3,000 votes, echoed that sentiment.
“I’m glad your kids are ok, and take care of those fingers,” they commented. “Husband can sleep in the doghouse. I can’t imagine what kind of man would fault you for taking care of your children.”
“So your husband is so pathologically spineless he’s OK with his wife getting injured and his kids almost getting killed?” Redditor u/crockofpot confusedly chimed in.
In a separate comment, which has received close to 1,000 votes, Redditor u/Kirin2013 offered a more level-headed response.
“[Not the a**hole],” they wrote. “If the police deem it offensive enough to get into contact with [the driver], then obviously you are not in the wrong.”