LulaRoe Chooses to Back Up Retailer Mocking People With Disabilities
LulaRoe — do you know who they are? Probably. They’ve exploded as one of America’s most successfully deceitful fashion pyramid schemes, capitalizing from their own employees and boasting high margins of profit as a result of cheap material and competitive third-world labor costs.
I know this because my wife and I lost thousands, struggling to achieve the level of success that LulaRoe advertised during training calls, only to learn the business had already been monopolized by the highest tiers of independent retailers within the organization.
Recently, company owner, DeAnne Stidham, took the opportunity to leverage her newborn granddaughter’s extra chromosome to partner with the National Down Syndrome Society (NDSS).
Now, let’s be honest, this isn’t the first time a celebrity or entrepreneur has flaunted an infant for media attention. In 2002, pop icon Michael Jackson dangled a baby off a hotel balcony.
But Stidham knew her granddaughter’s disability could generate enough empathy to attract clientele from a new target audience: the disability community.
So she designed a new piece of clothing and coined it “the Scarlett,” named after her granddaughter. Stidham promised a $1 donation to NDSS with every Scarlett purchased by her thousands of independent retailers. This promotion raked in over $150,000 in donations for the NDSS during its initial launch, and rewarded Stidham with a well-deserved pat on the back for fulfilling their mission statement promise of “serving others and strengthening families.”
After only one year, the NDSS announced Friday they would be disrupting their partnership with LuLaRoe and discontinuing any “further programming” with them.
Both, LulaRoe and NDSS issued statements regarding the impromptu separation, but upon comparison of the two, LulaRoe’s statement just ain’t smellin’ right, and discrepancies in the details just aren’t adding up.
Both parties agree the separation is a result of one of LulaRoe’s independent retailer’s insensitive mocking of a person with disabilities during a live social media sale.
The retailer released an apology video soon after, which in my sarcastic opinion, offered an emotional splendor of warm comfort and sound justification for his public intolerance.
At the start of the apology video, Robert attempts to earn the trust and respect of his viewers wedged between his supportive wife and a seemingly random woman with Down syndrome. At this point, the presence of the woman appears as nothing more than propaganda as Robert waves this poetic flag as an offering of peace to the disability community.
Robert emotionally recounts the events leading up to meeting and marrying his wife, revealing the woman to his left is his sister-in-law.
Now this is starting to make sense! Viewers are surely on the verge of forgiveness as Robert justifies his actions through the undismissable bond between him and his sister-in-law.
He further assures his audience of his tolerance, confessing that prior to meeting his wife, he had always wished “a Down syndrome” would be part of his family one day, and somehow knew it would one day come to be. So, when he met his wife and learned her sister “was a Down syndrome,” the stars had truly aligned and confirmed his prophetic visions.
And how can such a plea for forgiveness go unaccepted with the support of an individual with Down syndrome seated right beside him, enthusiastically endorsing her brother-in-law’s testimony?
See it for yourself: She “was a Down syndrome.”
Apology accepted, Robert! You’ve won our hearts!
Following his apology, the NDSS issued the following statement:
NDSS states the video of one of LulaRoe’s independent retailers publicly mocked a person with a disability during a live broadcast, thus resulting in NDSS’ decision to end their partnership with the fashion company.
Now, take a look at the statement issued by Stidham and her husband, Mark:
This statement, issued after the initial announcement released by NDSS, states the decision to terminate the partnership was that of LulaRoe’s, and not NDSS. Their statement agrees one of their independent retailers “exhibited unacceptable and insensitive behavior,” but insists that NDSS presented them with an ultimatum: fire the insensitive consultant, or lose the NDSS partnership.
Well, as their statement confirms, Stidham’s unwavering views of “education and awareness” clearly stomped her previous claims of charitable commitment to promoting disability awareness and defending her granddaughter’s dignity as an individual with disabilities.
So, basically, instead of continuing to support the mission of the National Down Syndrome Society, they chose to terminate the company’s partnership so one miseducated and insensitive employee could keep his part-time gig as a social media salesman?
Uh…..OK — just what are your priorities?
Stidham claims in the statement that LulaRoe has a “commitment to not fight intolerance with eradication,” but in making her decision she has, quite literally, chosen to support intolerance.
If we don’t eradicate intolerance, how will we ever get rid of it?
When Lularoe launched the Scarlett, Stidham promised to continue contributing proceeds to NDSS indefinitely, but some independent retailers have aroused suspicion that the business owner may have secretly reneged on her commitment.
The concerns became topic of conversation after Stidham’s live broadcast from one of her warehouses where she announced they would soon begin donating $1 from each “Scarlett” purchase to NDSS, an initiative that most independent retailers with the company were under the assumption was already in effect.
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Cover image via Youtube