Fascinating Twitter Conversation About Race In The Service & Retail Industries + A Story From Me

Late Friday morning a fascinating discussion broke out on twitter, prompted by NPR race & culture reporter Gene Demby’s question about personal experiences regarding being profiled while interacting with the service industry. That question itself was prompted by Oprah Winfrey revealing she was told by an obvious-oblivious store clerk in Switzerland that she “wouldn’t be able to afford” a handbag she was interested in.

It prompted numerous personal replies from people of color and others whose personal experiences with being pre-judged prompted them to speak out.

The exchange is as follows:

The exchange included my own story, relayed from the other side of the profiling perspective.

That story was completely true and happened the very first day I worked in a retail job in 1997. Over the years I’ve had the displeasure of witnessing a lot of racial profiling in the retail industry, nearly all of it coming from the management or upper-supervisor level in as an unofficial edict.

I encourage those interested in further discussion on the topic to read the original twitter thread.

Go read the whole conversation here… https://twitter.com/GeeDee215/status/365845515176390657

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