Diatribe: Being Judged By Your Appearance Even If You’re Oprah.
I’m often amused by the way people perceive each other based only on the way they look. Far too many people judge others based solely on their appearance without making an effort to learn more. Frequently, the first impression that we make on strangers is determined by what we wear.
If I stop at a department store in my local mall on the way home from the office, salespeople will most always approach me to ask if I need help. Perhaps they assume that, because I’m dressed nicely I have money to spend. On the other hand, if I drop by the same store after finishing chores at the barn, dressed in jeans and boots, I’ll be all but ignored by the same sales staff. Wardrobe choice is not the only means by which people are judged prematurely.
Recently, Oprah Winfrey claimed her request to see a handbag in a boutique during a recent visit to Switzerland was denied because an employee thought she would be able to afford it. Winfrey, apparently, believes the clerk’s reaction was determined by her race.
“I was in Zurich the other day, in a store whose name I will not mention. I say to the woman, ‘Excuse me, may I see the bag right above your head?’ and she says to me, ‘No. It’s too expensive.’” – Oprah Winfrey to Entertainment Tonight.
When Winfrey insisted that she really did want to see the almost-$40,000 bag, the clerk allegedly replied “No, no you don’t want to see that one, you want to see this one because that one will cost too much. You will not be able to afford that.”
The store eventually apologized saying the incident was simply a “misunderstanding”. They were, of course, correct … they misunderstood that Oprah earned approximately seventy-seven million dollars last year alone, is worth more than a billion dollars and can afford to buy all the purses that she wants … regardless of the color of her skin.
Have you ever been judged, like Oprah, because of your appearance?
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