St. Louis Bookstore’s Amazing Response to Losing a Customer Over #BlackLivesMatter Storefront Signs
Left Bank Books, an independent bookstore in St. Louis, recently replaced its storefront display of novels and memoirs with parallel banks of “Black Lives Matter” signs.
The display, created to honor the anniversary of Michael Brown’s death, made co-owner Jarek Steele nervous — nervous about the protests shaking St. Louis, nervous about losing customers, nervous about not giving the great books they sell the prominent attention they need and deserve.
Well, it turns out one of his fears was realized, for the display inspired a customer to anonymously write and object to the bookstore “stoking flames of enmity” before declaring the end of his or her patronage.
Because after about 20 years of actively trying to unlearn all of the above, I still make mental corrections, and know that those white people who grew up around me, raised me, were raised by me and wandered in and out of my life do it too even if (especially if?) they are making an effort to be white allies.
The last part resonates with me. I, also, have been working to unlearn and it is incredibly difficult.