A California surf shop decided to honor MLK’s memory by holding a “Respect" sale, but did they go too far?
A California surf shop decided to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s memory by holding a “Respect" sale, but did they go too far?
On Monday, the Thalia Surf Shop announced an all-black sale with a flier featuring the civil rights leader as a surfer. During the two-day online sale, all black items, such as wet suits and T-shirts, were discounted about 20 percent.
Storeowner Nick Cocores was caught off guard to find that the promotion ruffled more than a few feathers. The ad has since been removed from Thalia Surf Shop’s website, and Nick issued a formal apology via the store’s blog.
"We took down the ad for our sale to hopefully calm the waters and in the future will be more careful in our selection of promotions," Nick said. "We appreciate the support from customers and patrons of Thalia Surf that know us and know that we meant no harm."
Still, it seems that S2S readers on Facebook.com feel that the sale completely missed the mark and was actually quite disrespectful. However, there is some dispute as to why Thalia was wrong.
Deborah Bilbo-Coney thinks it’s good that the store was even acknowledging the day, but she questions why the surf shop was only discounting black items. Others took issue with the ads depiction of MLK as a surfer.
“What does MLK have to do [with] surfing?” Raquel M. Wallen asked. “His memory doesn’t need to be honored [with] discounts at the stores. To honor his memory we need to read a book, go to a museum, volunteer at a homeless shelter, etc. Elevate and educate ourselves. I’m sure that’s what he would want.”
Angela Mitchell was just blown away by Thalia’s whole concept and execution, writing, “We all know the motive is MONEY not for what he actually stood for.”
Let us know what you think. Was Thalia wrong for its "Respect" sale or do you think more retailers should honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s memory with a discount?
— Sonya Eskridge