Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has referred to White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany as “Karen,” a pejorative term for White women, after Ms. McEnany called the mayor “derelict” for failing to seek federal help with street violence.
After Ms. McEnany criticized the mayor on Thursday at a White House press briefing, the mayor replied on Twitter, “Hey, Karen. Watch your mouth.”
The name “Karen” is a general-purpose insult on social media to describe White women who are acting entitled, including in racial situations.
Ms. McEnany responded to the mayor on Friday, “While you’re focused on words, America is outraged by the violence perpetuated in your city.”
“One person is taking action to stop violence in our streets: President @realDonaldTrump,” she told the mayor. “He’s offered your city help. It’s a dereliction of duty not to take it.”
On Thursday, Ms. McEnany referred to Ms. Lightfoot as “the derelict mayor of Chicago.”
The president plans to announce next week federal “help” for cities such as Chicago to suppress an increase in shootings and homicides. The administration has announced a similar surge of federal law-enforcement agents in Kansas City, Missouri.
Mr. Trump has complained that Democratic mayors such as Ms. Lightfoot are failing to request federal action, which has prevented the administration from sending in personnel.
In Portland, Oregon, federal authorities reportedly used tear gas on Thursday night to disperse protesters demonstrating over racial injustice. The American Civil Liberties Union said federal agents in unmarked cars also have been grabbing demonstrators and taking them away.
“What is happening now in Portland should concern everyone in the United States,” said Jann Carson, interim executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Oregon. “Usually when we see people in unmarked cars forcibly grab someone off the street we call it kidnapping. The actions of the militarized federal officers are flat-out unconstitutional and will not go unanswered.”
She said under the direction of the Trump administration, “militarized federal agents have flaunted court orders protecting the rights of protesters, used sharpshooters to deliberately maim people, and deployed indiscriminate weapons of war — including sonic weapons and dangerous tear gas formulations.”
“Protesters in Portland have been shot in the head, swept away in unmarked cars, and repeatedly tear-gassed by uninvited and unwelcome federal agents. We won’t rest until they are gone,” she said.