Hermes And A Socialite’s Life Give Oprah A Big Fat Apology

June 24th, 2005 // 10 Comments

Our Oprah post yesterday brought out the a nastiness in the commentors that this sight has never seen before. I want to personally apologize to anyone, including Oprah, who was offended by the racist remarks. They have been since removed.

It’s looking like having to enforce people who leave comments to have to register before they are able to post. As I’ve said before, I love the majority of the comments people leave, it shows we are call unique individuals with varying opinions. However, when opinions turn offensive we have to draw the line. So I’m going to see how things go for the next couple of days and I’m hoping I’m not disappointed Then if need be, I’ll turn on the comment registration.

Onto the story that started all of this.

The luxury store Hermes has apologized to Oprah Winfrey for turning her away from one of its Paris boutiques last week, saying it was closed for a public relations event when she came knocking.

The talk-show host and “an entourage” unsuccessfully tried to enter an Hermes boutique on Paris’ posh Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honore at 6:45 p.m. on June 14, Hermes said in a statement.

“People were in the store and they were shopping. Oprah was at the door and she was not allowed into the store,” Gayle King, a friend of Winfrey who witnessed the incident, told syndicated TV show “Entertainment Tonight.” “Oprah describes it herself as `one of the most humiliating moments of her life.’”

King said it’s unlikely that Winfrey will shop there again. “She’s really OK. Her position is, `I will shop where people appreciate my business, and I don’t believe that any longer includes Hermes,’” King said.

“Hermes regrets not having been able to welcome Madame Oprah Winfrey and the people accompanying her to give them all the attention and service that Hermes is committed to giving each of its clients in the world,” said the statement, released Tuesday. “Hermes expresses its sincere regrets for any misunderstanding that these circumstances could have caused.”

So I guess we all know what Oprah won’t be featuring on her annual “Favorite Things” show.

French Luxury Store Apologizes to Oprah [AP]

By Miu von Furstenberg

  1. Teah

    Why in the hell should Oprah get any special treatment?! What, is she queen of the world all of a sudden? It was past closing, they were trying to finish up with the customers already IN the store, clean up and go home! People working in stores have lives and families, too, I’m sure. It takes a while to close up registers and clean up after the last customer leaves. I dont understand WHY everyone has to bend over backward just cuz Oprah decided to show up late and shop! what’s with the kind of entitlement attitude???

  2. ocean

    i agree w/ you, if any average person came after closing they would have been rejected as well. being a celebrity doesn’t give you the right to constantly recieve special privileges. if i wasn’t let in a store, i wouldn’t be insulted, i would understand that it was closed. i think her ego needed a little reality check.

  3. Steve

    Agreed, she show up after closing. I’d have told to beat it as well. They shouldn’t be apologizing, they should be saying DON’T COME BACK.

  4. Cindy Kellar

    I wish I’d checked the site yesterday as I’m dying to know what people wrote. Personally, North African or not, if the store was closed, the store was closed. It doesn’t matter who your are! She has a TV show, she can make her own “announcement” about it.


  5. bleurgh

    this is SUCH absurd and BLATANT crap. Just another attempt to manipulate the people into thinking she was done wrong, when it is clear from the statement coming from Hermes that the people inside were not “shopping”, but prepping a PR event, 15 AFTER CLOSING TIME. Funny how this little piece provided here does not include that part of the Hermes statement.. I also call bullshit on the “north africans” statement, as it does not sit well with the “we know who you are” part. :P Oprah is right, this IS incredibly embarassing for her, the fact that she actually made a big deal out of her rudeness, and through Gayle too.. not even on her own, but has the flunkies do it for her..

  6. lala

    duh. This is so stupid, but like with every story there have to be two sides, oprahs and hermes. In the end i think it was just a misunderstanding made a big deal by oprah’s entourage.
    If I were oprah I would not be complaining because I know I have enough money to BUY hermes if I felt like it. Hell, I could buy paris.

  7. tahitiantemptress

    good god-its only freakin Oprah, it was past closing time and that means no more people in the store. Does that not sound logical? I always thought Oprah makes a point of her being “down to earth” and “just like anyone else” well diva behaviour certainly isnt helping her prove her point. So what if Oprah gets kicked out of a store? Its ridiculous how people get so insulted over something that doesnt even remotely concern or affect them.

    And to all the people threatening to leave? Leave! You’re probably making this site a better place for everyone else.

  8. Re'Tina

    First I am not taking up for Oprah but I read that there were people on the inside of the store shopping around. Now people lets get real! Regardless if this was Oprah or some regular black woman who works 9-5, the same thing would have happen. Racisim is alive and well everywhere. The only reason we are talking about it is because it was Oprah, a well known celebrity. The truth is this happens everyday at Sears, Wal-mart, JcPenny, etc. and we don’t hear about it because the people are not famous. So don’t hate on Oprah because of who she is but, lets look at the situation and call it what it was racist! And lets look for a solution and not a gripe session. Socialite I love your blog. Thanks for having respect for others and removing offensive racist comments! Makes me love you even more!

  9. AgainstRacism

    The store was CLOSED. Any NORMAL person would have understood and simply moved on.

    I agree totally with your stand on editing out of free speech racist comments about niggers.

  10. Jen

    This was one of her most humiliating moments in her life? Oprah has suffered through abuse, molestation, prejudice etc but not being allowed in a store after closing hours was humiliating??? Welcome to my world Oprah!
    One more thing …..why is it rascist if whites make fun of blacks but its funny as hell to Oprah when the Wayans brothers sit on her couch & make fun of whites??

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