Oprah Winfrey Tells a Damaging Lie?

Oprah Winfrey
Famous, super-rich elitist Oprah Winfrey – who’s craving for attention knows no limits – was determined to chime in on the ongoing national debate about race-relations. The sheer scale of Winfrey’s success, power and personal fortune shows that she has probably never, in her adult life, been on the receiving end of racial discrimination. To interject herself into the debate, therefore, she made up a story – but Winfrey should understand that lies are damaging; when you tell a lie, it is going to have negative consequences for someone.

It is unlikely that Winfrey cares about the consequences of her little fictional tale but, for Swiss sales associate “Adriana N,” the damage is done. Adriana is the employee of the Zurich store, Trois Pommes (Three Apples), who allegedly declined to show Winfrey a $38,000 handbag. According to Winfrey, this was obviously a case of racism; since Winfrey is black, it was automatically assumed that she could not afford the item. The entire story is, of course, preposterous for a number of reasons.

Trois Pommes, an upmarket chain of stores which sell women’s designer clothing, shoes and accessories, is the kind of establishment that is routinely patronized by the rich and famous. Within such stores, the sales associates would be trained specifically to not treat their customers in the manner Winfrey claims she was treated. There can be little doubt that, when Winfrey entered the store, she was wearing clothes that were worth more than Adriana earns in a year. Why, then, would this associate make an assumption that the American celebrity could not afford the item in question? Does Winfrey assume that Trois Pommes had never before been visited by a wealthy black person? Did she really think that the Swiss are unaware of the existence of non-white rich people?

Speaking to Swiss newspaper Sonntags Blick, Adriana says that Winfrey’s claim of discrimination is “absolutely untrue.” The sales associate, who, it now appears, is the innocent victim of Winfrey’s spiteful and damaging lie, recounts the events of that day; “I even asked her if she wanted to take a closer look at the bag. Mrs. (sic) Winfrey looked around in the store again, but did not say anything further,” Adriana told the paper. “Then she went downstairs with her companion. My colleague held the door open for them. They were not even five minutes in our store.”

The sales associate also told the newspaper that she has not been able to sleep properly for days and explained that the incident has turned her world – at least for the time being – upside down.

Winfrey, perhaps feeling guilty for making up a story that – she now realizes – has had a very negative effect on someone else’s life, has since tried to defuse the situation. She apparently now regrets that the story got “blown up”, but she should have known that it would; an extremely high-profile businesswoman and television star claiming that she was discriminated against because she is black? There was no question that the story was going to attract a considerable amount of attention. Now that the unwitting victim of Winfrey’s flight of fancy has spoken out to contradict her account of events, the TV diva realizes, perhaps, that she has been caught in a lie. Lies – told by anyone – are usually damaging to someone else. When someone of Oprah Winfrey’s stature tells a lie, its effects are far more damaging; Adriana is probably lucky that she still has her job. Winfrey should consider herself lucky that she probably will not be sued for defamation of character, by both the store owner and her unfortunate employee.

An Op/Ed by Graham J Noble

73 Responses to "Oprah Winfrey Tells a Damaging Lie?"

  1. G.W   May 28, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    Racism was rampant when Oprah was a kid. I am her same age and also grew up in the South. Did the author of this article say Oprah probably never experienced racism when white only signs were everywhere when Oprah was a kid!

  2. Guest   May 28, 2017 at 8:55 pm

    I am the same age as Oprah and also grew up black n the South. I certainly remember white only water fountains and white only signs this author lost credibility saying Oprah probably never experienced racism! Delusional is the word for it.

  3. Cheri Myles   March 28, 2016 at 8:37 pm

    Racism has nothing to do with color, I am so sick of hearing that. I am a white women that is married to a black man and work in an almost complete Hispanic environment. Who is the minority in this situation, Shall I cry out that I’m not being treated fairly because I’m white? Skin color has nothing I repeat nothing to do with a person’s wealth. get over it people get off your A** and get a life.

  4. BJ   February 29, 2016 at 10:36 pm

    Most celebs don’t always dress up when going out, I believe her and it could have been in the look the sales rep gave her. I don’t know how some white people could comment about what racism feels like or looks like, it most definitely is not always words but actions like trying to show you something different more suitable for what they believe your worth is. This person may not even have known it was her cause of the look alike.

  5. sean   January 3, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    i agree with mohammed

  6. Joseph H. Davis   December 23, 2015 at 10:53 am

    OPRAH IS BILL COSBY!

    GEt IT ?

  7. Been there done that   September 20, 2015 at 9:02 am

    Never heard this story about Oprah. I do know there was a refusal of entry to Hermes in Paris. I also know that just because one has money as an African American adult does not retro exempt one from racism or socioeconomic disparity. Many ” Black ” celebs never for get their normal day to day racial struggle after becoming ” CELEBRITY “.This story is a wrong prime example about black perceived entitlements .Oprah and I ” are judged on our skin on a daily basis and not our merit. I really dispise the fact that Oprahs wealth and fame is the vetting factor for the authors harsh article. Futhermore I know for a fact this author has never met Oprah or been in her company as evidenced by the tone and choice of the word elitist which she is not.

  8. red   May 23, 2015 at 7:13 am

    wow robin came off as very unstable.
    Oprah’s own family has outed her stories of extreme poverty as tales of sensationalism or in their words, she’s a liar (not defined as someone who lies down but as someone who tells lies) I think such a high end shop would have had CCTV surveillance, I think Oprah told her story for a purpose, the shop owner and the employee likely signed nondisclosure agreements relatively quickly after the story blew up, and the ironic thing is by crying wolf claiming to be the victim of racism. She herself perpetrated a racist act and her act is so much more unforgivable than some racist who just doesn’t know any better. Because she does and claims to suffer from it herself.

    Leave it to Oprah to tell a cute story of racism, an average white girl in the service industry unconsciously racist but honestly trying to be helpful to a black client.

    By definition Racism is the belief that a particular race is superior or inferior. I’m not sure that’s the problem in our society. I think the real problem is race hate.
    people need to quite feeding it.

    if you want respect give it even it you’re not getting it returned. Only an A-hole doesn’t return respect.

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