November 29, 2008

This makes me concerned about our society….

In the wee hours of yesterday morning, a man was trampled and killed inside of a Long Island, NY Wal-Mart store as hysterical shoppers broke down the doors and bent the door frames to get good deals on T.V’s, Video Game Systems and Kitchen Aids.

That’s right, folks, human life isn’t worth $50 anymore as belligerent shoppers refused to leave the store after the man’s death, claiming their long wait times as a reason to refuse to clear the premisis to allow police to investigate his death and remove his body with respect.

What’s more, this isn’t the first bad incident Wal-mart has had in regards to black Friday violence in their stores. In 2003 a women was trampled and knocked unconcious. While other stores have evolved past the run through the door crush (Best Buy only allows 25, wrist banded shoppers in their store at a time) Wal-Mart is still participating in and encouraging stampedes. The sign outside the Long Island store said “Blitz Line Starts Here”.

Blitz seems to imply something totally different.

Now, I’m sure some people will want to blame this death on the economy. That desperate people were trying to save a buck any way they could and that lead to the death of one and the injury of others, but clearly, this sort of hysteria happened in 2003 as well, far before we started worrying about economic crisis.

Big Daddy and I don’t “do” black friday. It’s not because we feel superior (though we are lucky to be in a financial position that we can make the choice to pay more for the convenience of smaller crowds), but it has a lot to do with not wanting to be packed belly to butt with a thousand of our nearest and dearest at the local Wal-Mart. On Friday morning, Big Daddy and I were tucked in bed with Littlebit snoozing between us. It was snowing at my Dad’s place. Great big heavy, quiet flakes. We crawl out of bed at 8 and my Dad made us breakfast while the girls played with their first round of Christmas bounty. In New York, an innocent man was already dead, a young mother was probably hysterical over the health of her unborn baby and others will demanding their right to buy low priced DVD’s despite the loss of life under their feet and by their hands.

I know that this won’t tame the Black Friday crowds and frankly, I don’t really care if it does. I admit that it’s not my scene and pay more to sit in the recliner and shop on Cyber Monday, but I hope this is a wake up call to Wal-Mart who should have instituted a better Black Friday or “Blitz” shopping policy AFTER the 2003 trampling (over a DVD player, btw. Wal-mart apologized and offered to hold a DVD player for the victim). Here’s hoping they wise up for next year.

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