Listen, I know that Oprah is an American superstar, but I also assume she has a level of fame that would mean she’d be recognized around the world – at least in major cities in the developed world. Apparently Zurich, Switzerland didn’t get the message, since Oprah was in the country for Tina Turner’s wedding (LOL) and decided to do a little shopping. However, things went downhill when a shop assistant repeatedly refused to show O a bag she wanted because she thought she couldn’t afford it. Whaaaaat? Oprah’s made more money last month than that shop assistant will in the next 20 years, so… no.
The shop owner later claimed it was a “misunderstanding” on the salesperson’s part, but fuck that. Oprah’s calling bullshit, as well, and feels as though the incident happened because of her race. Sad, but probably true. If Oprah was white, the assumption probably would have been that of COURSE she could afford it because white people are far more likely to be able to afford luxury. I can’t even get into this one.
Anyway, now the Swiss Tourism Board has decided to speak up and offer an apology (via WENN):
The press release reads: “Switzerland Tourism is deeply sorry to learn about the experience Ms. Winfrey recently had in Switzerland, and we apologize that her feelings were hurt. We would like to assure Ms. Winfrey – like any visitor to Switzerland – that she is welcome with open arms.”
Tourism reps also reached out to Winfrey directly via Twitter.com, adding, “We are fuming – this person acted terribly wrong. We are sorry this happened to @oprah.”
Something tells me she may not head back to the country anytime soon.