Wednesday, June 29, 2005

 

Oprah v. Hermes

First thought: the people at Hermes were really, really stupid. I can't imagine how much money they have and will lose in the future over this. Additionally, it is alleged that the Hermes staff member said during the course of the conversation that they had been having problems with North Africans in their store lately. If true, the accusations that this is a racial incident should be taken seriously, and I would question how people of color are treated at Hermes during regular business hours.

Second thought: Oprah shouldn't expect to get in after closing time, or at the least pick up the phone and let them know she's coming - I realize that these extremely high-end stores do make exceptions to their posted hours for celebrities and extremely wealthy individuals.

But my underlying problem is: People get refused service or treated disrespectfully because they are African-American, Mexican, Latino, whatever ALL THE TIME. It's my hope that Oprah's show will focus on these people, and not her personal experience.

Finally, I found an article that discusses Sean Combs retail shopping habits:

“Puffy sends his people ahead to stores and shuts them down so he can shop privately, so this kind of thing doesn’t happen,” Wilbekin said.

Wow. I just don't know where to start on that.

That is, I think, outrageous. I can understand his desire not to be confronted with stupidity, but this is selfish and does nothing to improve conditions for anyone else, and I do believe that people with power, money, and privilege should do something constructive to make a more just society. This is basic common sense and common decency. What kind of society do you want to live in? One in which people are divided by class, color, or other superficial factors, or one in which we can live peaceably together? We have the first, we all have a great deal of work to do in order to get the latter.
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