Houston store owner criticized for selling Confederate merchandise

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Several Houstonians are calling for customers to boycott a store inside The Shops at Houston Center because the store owner sells confederate flag merchandise.

Dorothea Harris is the owner of Designs by Dorli. She said she has been selling confederate-themed items for years. Recently, she has received backlash from some customers.

"Yesterday, two women stopped by raising hell, calling the mall, hitting my Facebook, leaving nasty messages, threats and all kinds of good stuff," Harris said.

She said the manager at The Shops at Houston Center asked her to move the merchandise with confederate flag logos into the back closet for the time being.

Ashton Woods with the Houston chapter of Black Lives Matter said he does not support the sale of confederate flag merchandise.

"A lot of people would like to say that Houston is a welcoming and diverse city, but Houston is a fractured, segregated city," Woods said, "And we're working on coming together, I think that's something that should happen, but when a display like that is seen, we should see the good with the ugly."

He urges customers to boycott the store.

"Anyone who shops there, eats there with their black and brown friends to not go there anymore until that woman takes down her confederate flag," Woods said.

Harris said she moved to the United States from Germany in the '70s and that she views the confederate flag as history.

"I don't have a dog in the fight, I'm German," Harris said, "I'm not political on that, I mean, to me, it's history, unless you're really ignorant and didn't pay attention in class."

The Shops at Houston Center declined to comment.
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