The other day I was thumbing through my newsfeed on Facebook, and a post from the Austin Justice Coalition stood out. They were commenting on a recent brochure that had been put out by the property management group for the swanky shopping area known as The Domain. The flyer has since been retracted and followed by numerous apologies from the property management group and many stores in The Domain.
The purpose of this flyer, well I honestly can’t imagine the intent behind it, but they were describing the demographic of people they referred to as “the quintessential Domain Northside shopper.”
Be warned, as I can only imagine this is how many of the Irish felt after first reading Jonathan Swift’s “A Modest Proposal”, and he suggests eating babies, as a solution to their economic hardship. Surely this a satire? Surely, they are sending a more significant message here? Sorry folks, this is not the case.
It is confusing at first, as the flyer starts off by saying, “Domain Northside serves a diverse group of new class consumer…” First of all, I was wondering exactly what they meant by a “new class consumer,” and as I read on about this particular patron of the luxury shopping center…yes, it is merely a shopping center, diversity is nowhere to be found.
They go on to say their shopper only wears name brands and spends a lot of money on her appearance in order to look good (shallow), this person only wears or carries luxury brands and has multiple vehicles ranging from BMW’s to Range Rover Sports (materialistic), and this quintessential shopper wants attention and to be noticed (insecure).
So far, I would never want to be this person nor would I want to surround myself with their company.
Although I do not live near The Domain Northside and do not frequent their stores, I am so wholeheartedly offended, as someone who does value diversity and does not judge people on what label they wear or car they drive. But what about the people who do shop there regularly? This brochure presents a ridiculous stereotype, and I do hope this is equally appalling and offensive to their loyal clientele. The only “class” they have described seems to be the elite upper-class of the wealthy and privileged. This is in no way, “new!”
The flyer goes on to say that their regular shopper describes themselves as “Anglo, Jewish, or Asian.” Ah, this must be that diversity they were describing at the beginning. Are they for real? I cannot fathom the person or persons who created this and thought to themselves that this is a good idea.
Is this the same Austin, Texas I love so well? What happened to the hipster-filled Austin, where everyone is a musician or liberal political activist? What happened to the laidback counter-culture where this shit just wouldn’t stand?
The good news is we are still here. It’s why it is splashed all over Facebook. It’s why it’s all over our local news stations, in order to bring to light the offensive message this flyer sends. The people who live here and shop here, take pride in being a part of this city and are not happy with this stereotype set out by a Dallas retail group.
That’s right, as I was reading more from KXAN, I learned the Northwood Retail Group isn’t even from Austin. They are from a city; one could easily describe as being the polar-opposite of Austin, Texas. They are selling a lifestyle that might work for Dallas or even Houston, but they have seriously missed the mark for the city who treats dogs like people, casual Friday is every day, and is full of high-tech hippies who celebrate and honor the weird.
Either way, it is a disheartening message.
Some people are shouting “boycott” or “guillotine,” okay, not guillotined…just boycott. I know many of the stores have leases and are probably tied in by extensive contracts, but I do hope they are equally appalled and consider it when it’s time to renew their lease. I love Kendra Scott, and I know she has one of her stores located in The Domain. I still think of her as a “local designer,” but one has to consider with whom they associate, and although it’s not always fair, are guilty by association. I feel like this is a lesson taught, as we journey off to our first day of kindergarten. It seems some need a refresher in this concept.
I know I have been opinionated and will let you judge for yourself. How does it make you feel? KXAN News Report
THE DOMAIN NORTHSIDE SHOPPER
THE DOMAIN SERVES A DIVERSE GROUP OF NEW CLASS CONSUMERS FROM ACROSS THE REGION, INCLUDING THE THOUSANDS WHO LIVE IN ITS LUXURY APARTMENTS, STAY IN ITS BOUTIQUE HOTELS, AND WORK IN IT’S HIGH-TECH OFFICE BUILDINGS.
The quintessential shopper? She’s a classy, trendy, well-heeled woman between 30 and 60 years old. The Domain woman:
-Cares about how she looks and feels, and spends generously on the upkeep of herself and her family;
-Is understated, but wants to be noticed, and wears brands that earn positive attention from others;
-Carries a Louis Vuitton, Celine, or Givenchy handbag;
-Wears rag and bones skinny jeans and Frye boots during the day, and changes into an LBD and Jimmy Choo heels at night;
-Drives a BMW 6 Series to go out with her girlfriends at night, and by day she drives a Range Rover Sport;
-Wears a David Yurman ring, an Alexis Bittar bracelet, and Kendra Scott earrings;
-Is most likely to describe her ethnicity as Anglo, Jewish, or Asian;
Is married, but also highly successful in her own career.
Long before I have seen this brochure all over Facebook and picked up by most local news affiliates, The Domain was not my domain anyway. However, after this shocking display of propaganda, I will forever avoid it. Besides, according to their flyer, I don’t think my orange Dodge Journey would be welcome in the parking lot.