“COVID-19”, “Karen” among annual list of banished words, terms

More casualties of the pandemic have been revealed as seven words related to the virus were banished by the Lake Superior State University in Michigan.

A health care worker holds a rapid test kit (Photo: Jaipal Singh/Shutterstock)

The university’s Banished Words List committee shared its list of 10 words and terms to be left behind in 2020, seven of which are linked to the coronavirus.

Among the unfortunate slate is “COVID-19” and “social distancing”, which have truly been used to the point of nausea.

Lake Superior also listed “We’re all in this together”, “In an abundance of caution”, “In these uncertain times”, “unprecedented” and “pivot” as terms to have gotten the chop.

Completing the list are “sus”, short for “suspicions”, “I know, right?” and  “Karen”, which it said has moved from being an “anti-racist critique of the behaviour of white women in response to black and brown people” to a “misogynist umbrella term for critiquing the perceived overemotional behaviour of women”.

The school has published the annual list since 1976 to encourage the avoidance of words and terms that are “overworked, redundant, oxymoronic, clichéd, illogical, nonsensical — and otherwise ineffective, baffling, or irritating.”