“Basic Girl” and the Plight of All The Special Snowflakes

Socorro Carrillo, Cactus Staff Writer

There you see her, sitting there across the way, she’s drinking Pumpkin Spice, wearing Uggs and pants as tights, she’s a basic girl. I really hope you read that to the tune of Kiss the Girl from the Little Mermaid (Every Basic girl’s favorite princess!). What I’ve just described to you is the classic “basic” girl. You’ve heard the term on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or one of the hundreds of Buzzfeed articles that tell you whether you’re “basic” or not.

The term has been around for some time, however it really took off when popular website College Humor decided to do a video about it. The video is subpar but what it reveals is something that is lying just underneath the surface.  Hint: Basic is really just a code word for generic and uninteresting. This fictionalized girl is about as unusual and quirky as oatmeal, she listens to Taylor swift and thinks Marilyn Monroe is a philosopher. These characteristics are plain Jane but also ridiculed.  Which begs the question what is wrong with being generic? These stereotypes do nothing to compliment the idea of a melting pot society. In the United States we are a wonderful mixture of different ideals and interest. A literal cornucopia of culture.

But instead of celebrating the differences too many of us criticize them. The reason for this criticism is because we millennials are of the special snowflake syndrome generation. This non-medical affliction causes the victim to view everything that they don’t do as un-cool. From the time we were wee lambs its been shoved down our throats that we’re different, special, one in a million even. Each of our tastes, interests, and hobbies are wholly our own. No one is like us, so when we see someone who is so “normcore” our special snowflake gene desiccates in disbelief that someone would dare be so average.

To which I reply, just drop it. So what if someone likes to Instagram their morning coffee or use the hashtag “blessed.” Yoga pants are really comfortable and North face jackets are exceptionally warm! You, in all your sherklockwhovian construct is no different.  So what if you know that Attack on Titan is actually called Shinjeki No Kyojin. Or you believe that you’re not like other girls because you saw 500 Days of Summer in the 8th grade and decided to cut your bangs and listen to The Smiths. You are no different no more exceptional than the girl who likes Ke$ha and watching Teen Mom.  Each of us is as cool and un-cool as we want to be. It’s my belief that this idea of a basic girl or on the other end of the spectrum the Manicpixiedream girl are just different versions of the same thing. We each praise things that a million other people do as well.  Why are we criticizing a select group of people?

Next time you see the word basic being thrown around why not reflect on the connotations of the word. The meaning behind a few letters affects so much more than we realize. On the surface we don’t see the ramifications of what’s being said. So from a self-identified basic to a special snowflake let’s just get along, respect each other’s opinions, toast with an Arizona Iced Tea, and call it a day.} else {