Saturday, November 29, 2008

Black Friday

I took H and C to Munchkinland today in order to burn off some energy and have a little (or a lot of) fun. I immediately noticed something was amiss; there was an abundance of dads present with their children. Yep, stuck doin' time at Munchkinland while their wives went shopping or did whatever else it is you do the day after Thanksgiving.

Last year, because I was buying gifts for everyone, I went out in the mad frenzy that is the mall, Wal-Mart and other retail outlets in order to get the good deals. I have to say, I was really disappointed with the 'deals' at the mall, but went to Wal-Mart because they always have several advertised specials and I had PS2 games to buy for my nieces and nephew. Yes, it was busy, but it wasn't out of control.

I was reading Milly V's blog today and read about this incident at a Long Island Wal-Mart in which an employee died as a crowd of customers trampled him during a stampede when the doors were opened. Are you kidding me?! What could possibly be worth ramming yourself into a store so hard and fast that people die?! In addition, a woman's miscarriage is attributed to this incident. This isn't the running of the bulls, folks. There's not a fire. Your life will not end if your child doesn't get the newest gadget at 50% off. But apparently somebody else's will.

"Roughly 2,000 people gathered outside the Wal-Mart's doors in the predawn darkness.
Chanting "push the doors in," the crowd pressed against the glass as the clock ticked down to the 5 a.m. opening.

Sensing catastrophe, nervous employees formed a human chain inside the entrance to slow down the mass of shoppers.

It didn't work.

The mob barreled in and overwhelmed workers.

"They were jumping over the barricades and breaking down the door," said Pat Alexander, 53, of Crown Heights, Brooklyn. "Everyone was screaming. You just had to keep walking on your toes to keep from falling over."

After the throng toppled Damour, his fellow employees had to fight through the crowd to help him, police said.

Witness Kimberly Cribbs said shoppers acted like "savages."

"When they were saying they had to leave, that an employee got killed, people were yelling, 'I've been on line since Friday morning!'" Cribbs said. "They kept shopping.""

My thoughts are with the family and friends of that employee, and I hope that everyone takes this as a very hard-won lesson about what the holidays are supposed to be; a time to slow down and appreciate each other and what we already have.


Crafty Mama said...

I heard about this last sad.

Alex Elliot said...

I still can't believe this!