White Girl Problems: the infamous twitter account with over half a million followers that is now a household name. Babe Walker, the fictional ultimate white girl with problems, is a medium by which three young writers poke fun at the new generation of the young, trendy, bourgeoise girl.
Constant tweets about dieting, calling daddy, the pains of being rich and doing or saying inappropriate things have attracted the twitter feed of nearly 525,000 followers and sparked a widespread phenomenon that has transcended the barriers of Twitter.
I hate this website.
Now, when I say I hate White Girl Problems, what I really mean is that I read the twitter stream religiously, really look forward to buying the book, and totally relate to the woes of Babe's privileged life. It is the latter that I resent, and, as a result of the embarrassing similarities between the troubles that plague my peers and those of Babe, my guilt is spinning out of control.
A few weeks ago a friend and I went to Whole Foods for lunch. My girlfriend checked out the vast selection of designer water, finally settling on glass-bottled Voss. As she picked it out of the fridge she turned to me and said, "This water is so rich." To be perfectly honest, my natural reaction was laughter. However, after ruminating on this flippant comment and hearing several others in the same vein, I really got to thinking about its social significance.
Whether it be via Twitter, text, or even sometimes out loud, my generation is getting away with saying obnoxious and pretentious things. By adding silly hashtags at the end, we are ultimately diluting serious issues with irony and making it OK to be spoiled.
People would be outraged and disturbed if a Twitter stream stating things like, "I just got evicted from my home #unemployedproblems," were to emerge. Yet, promoting eating disorders, living off of daddy's money forever and ridiculing those that are less than perfect, rich and skinny is socially acceptable, humorous and worth half a million followers. Though these statements are obviously not meant to be taken seriously, the joke has gone too far.
The fact of the matter is that I am very lucky. I have a loving family, go to private school, and both my peers and myself have a lot to look forward to in life. However, this does not resonate with the majority of Americans.
Across the nation, protests are popping up everywhere from Wall Street to UC Davis supporting the "99 percent," yet in the meantime, the emerging trend of mocking privilege continues to rise.
Though I am critical of the notion, I must admit that I, too, not only have "white girl problems," but in the past have been guilty of exploiting them in the name of humor. However, while I have made casual comments about my desperate need for seat warmers in my Prius when it is 55 degrees out, regretting watching live TV instead of TiVo and making the critical decision about whether or not to unfollow Khloe Kardashian on Twitter, I realize I am culpable in minimizing grave issues via this frivolous spirit.
I am not suggesting that Babe Walker's half a million followers should abandon her, but rather that we as a society take a step back to recognize the real issues out there rather than hiding behind the guise of "troubled" elitism.
Plus, truth be told, how could I not totally hate Babe when she is stealing all my jokes? #whitegirlproblems.