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Is Lululemon Getting Too Political with Obama-Lovin, Racially-Tinged Window Displays?

in Ethics, YD News

OK, we know we’ve been on the Lululemon beat quite a bit this week, but we are a yoga blog afterall, (and dorks!) so here we go…

A window display in the Oak Brook Center, a mall in the suburb of Chicago, is turning some heads and drawing customer comments in the form of praise AND complaint.

“An Oak Brook store display highlighting President-elect Barack Obama and issues of race in America is causing a stir, with the store rejecting requests from some customers, and mall management, to take it down.

[the display] features two windows with a then-and-now theme. One features Martin Luther King Jr. and his famous “I Have a Dream” speech alongside a picture of “whites only” and “blacks only” restrooms. The other features President-elect Barack Obama, along with comments from employees stating their dreams and goals.”

Mall management has requested the removal of the display while the store managers refuse to comply. They defend their stance with “facts”, as in Obama is indeed the pres-elect, etc, and that the negative response is balanced by shoppers’ positive reaction. Furthermore, store manager Molly Donofrio argues that each store “has an individual display that is supposed to be a representation of that store and the community” and that these particular locals are balking because basically they’re stuffy rich white people.

For some statistical perspective, and because we were curious, we looked up the racial breakdown of Oak Brook students:

source

And so,  this leaves things WAY open for discussion.

Are they swinging too far into politics? Is the exploitation of African American icons to sell yoga clothes offensive to you and should they have to take it down?  Are Oak Brook residents just conservative richies overreacting?

Here’s a pic of another store window in Georgetown from the Lululemon Flickr account:

What do you think??

Window Display Causes Stir at Oak Brook Center [Pioneerlocal.com]

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