This is a much abused word. It originated in the Black Ghettoes of America, where it was an abreviation of hipster, and referred to White people who lived in the Ghetto and who had absorbed enough of the culture to become conscious or 'hip'. Later it was distorted to refer to a brand of pacifism in a historicisation of the sixties which obscured the consistent violence meted out to the Black communities, and the resistance put up against this violence.

A group which had accepted the term as referring to themselves buried the Hippy movement in 1967, i.e. just when it was being taken up by the mass media. By the seventies it was such a term of contempt, that people who would have been content to call themselves hippies called themselves punks and pretended to be nothing to do with the hippies, concocting slogans such as "Never trust a hippy", a parody of the sixties slogan "Never trust anyone over thirty". Certain propaganda emanating from the Islamic Republic of Iran called them "Sham Callandars" a reference to stray wandering mystics in Islamic culture. The worthy Mullahs behind this propaganda even suggested that Skinheads were simply hippies who had cut off all their hair.

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