Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday

I don't know how many of you have heard this horrific story, but I'll keep it short. I'm sure this is everywhere.

A Walmart greeter was trampled to death yesterday morning as a literal stampede of people knocked him down in their fury to get the latest and greatest deal.

Ahhh, Capitalism.

But this entry isn't about that. I'm pretty sure we're all smart enough to get what this does speak to - materialism, Christmas over consumerism, etc. The fact that we're so intent on getting what we want that we don't even notice we're trampling a man to death. Literally.

I figured we'd all understand that, and then I read this article.

Here's an excerpt:

"This incident was avoidable," said Bruce Both, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1500. "Where were the safety barriers? Where was security? ... This is not just tragic; it rises to a level of blatant irresponsibility by Wal-Mart."

Wal-Mart said it had added additional internal security, third party security, more store associates and had worked closely with local police. "We also erected barricades. Despite all of our precautions, this unfortunate event occurred," Hank Mullany, a Wal-Mart senior vice president, said in a statement.

So we're blaming Walmart for this? Not the mindset of the people? I don't know everything, but I'm just having a hard time wanting to blame the company. I know we all want Walmart and like companies to have a labor union (they don't as of right now right?) but this isn't where our focus should be. Let's not politicize this. A man died a brutal death at the onset of the Christmas season. Joy to the World, Peace and Goodwill to all Men.


We need to be screaming about the people who didn't give a shit enough. The mob mentality all for a good deal. Like others have said, there is nothing, absolutely nothing in that store that was worth a man's life.

Forget about Walmart. Let's stop blaming Walmart. I'm more concerned about the mentality of these people. Apparently some shoppers were pissed off when the store announced it would be closing because of the fresh tragedy. Others were trampled as some attempted to help the man.


My heart and thoughts go out to this man's family. What a horrible, horrible way to begin the best season of the year


Amanda said...

I don't know. I think in some ways, Walmart did have some share of the blame. What brought those people out to the store in a mob mentality? Who gave them the incentives to try to be one of the first in the door? I mean, why were all those thousands of people trying to get in in the first place?

The stores contribute to this mass hysteria by offering insane deals in order to entice customers. The people contribute because they are so set on getting that special deal. This year is even worse, because no one has any money.

If Walmart had offered no special deals, this would never have happened, so I can't hold them completely blameless.

Lisa said...

Everyone holds special deals on Black Friday, though. It's just what businesses do, regardless of the economy.

I just think there's more an issue with the people than with the business. Not that I'm a huge fan of Walmart - I shop there, sure, but it's begrudgingly.

The people are just insane. Fights have ensued in other stores. We need to take a moment to reprioritize.

I mean, they were pissed off when the store announced they'd be closing.

What the hell?

Amanda said...

Oh, I agree. I do think the people acted like animals. I just don't think the store (or ANY store that offers special deals to the first 10 people or whatever it is) is blameless. I mean, they WANT that mob mentality. They WANT a thousand people to try to get in the door first thing in the morning. It's like if someone yells "Fire" in a crowded theatre - I partly blame the people trampling over others in an attempt to get out, and I partly blame the one who yelled. Okay, so it's not a perfect analogy, but you get what I mean...