UPDATE: Exclusively by Boneheads

Lawyer Reposa apparently claims he posted "white people" stickers

Sticker on Rare Trends window
Sticker on Rare Trends window

In videos posted on YouTube, local defense attorney Adam Reposa has indirectly claimed that he posted the "white people" only stickers on Eastside businesses this week. While he doesn't expressly claim responsibility, one video is labeled "Why I did it," and another angrily attacks Rep. Dawnna Dukes as "dumb" and "stupid" for her reaction.

A call to Reposa was not immediately returned.

Original story after the videos.

ORIGINAL POST (Wednesday, March 18)

Eastside stores vandalized by racist anti-racist stickers

Wednesday morning some Eastside shop-owners and employees arrived at work to learn they were being stamped as racist segregators, allegedly in business "exclusively for white people." Professionally produced posters had been stuck on the shop windows, claiming sponsorship by a non-existent city "Contemporary Partition and Restoration Program."

Among the businesses tagged with the stamps – presumably some kind of ironic protest against gentrification – were the Rare Trends clothing store, El Chilito Tacos y Café, Windmill Bicycles, and Sugar Mama's Bakeshop.

In addition to the declaration, "exclusively for WHITE PEOPLE," the signs supposedly limit "a maximum of 5 colored customers" and allow only "colored BOH [back of house] staff accepted."

Caroline Gray, Director of Sales and Marketing for Rare Trends, said she hadn't seen the sticker when she came in this morning, and was only made aware of it when the phone began ringing with complaints. A post had gone viral on Facebook, and at least some people believed the sticker literally, and that it had been posted by the business itself. "When we found out," Gray said, "we took it down and are keeping it for the police. We understand they are investigating, but we have no idea who did it."

Among the people reacting angrily to the sign was state Rep. Dawnna Dukes, who contacted the city of Austin, and was told the city had no knowledge of the signs and that police were investigating. Earlier, Dukes had posted on her own FB page: "Some jokes just are not funny. If this is a joke at all, it is tasteless," and she suggested that if the shops themselves were involved, "They need to be put out of business."

Rare Trends posted on its own FB page: "We were victims of an outrageous vandalism act occurring in many East Austin businesses. Rare Trends does not or will never discriminate against any person regardless of their age, ethnicity or religious beliefs."

As more information became available, Dukes followed up with additional posts: "More businesses have been tagged with these disgusting seals. These seals not only violate numerous laws, ordinances and human rights, as well, they violate the spirit of the soul of City of Austin, this city we call home. Such acts shall not be tolerated. The culprits shall be brought to justice."

Since the stickers were professionally printed, it may be possible to track the producers. In any case, what appears to have been a ham-handed and bone-headed protest against gentrification and racism might well have backfired against its perpetrators.

Got something to say on the subject? Send a letter to the editor.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More by Michael King
Point Austin: The Abbott and GOP Project Is an Exercise in Brute Political Cynicism
Point Austin: The Abbott and GOP Project Is an Exercise in Brute Political Cynicism
What’s at stake in Texas

June 12, 2024

Point Austin: Everything Old Is New Again
Point Austin: Everything Old Is New Again
The long, honorable history of students “disturbing the war”

May 4, 2024


Eastside vandalism, Rare Trends, Dawnna Dukes

One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle