Archive for death

Wal-Mart worker trampled to death on Black Friday

Posted in 1, Family, Ranting with tags , , , , on November 28, 2008 by bloggingmom67

Black Friday has gotten out of hand. It’s sick. It’s insane. An Associated Press report says that a Wal-Mart employee was trampled to death by throngs of frantic shoppers. Yes, I said trampled to death. A person actually lost his or her life because people were too eager, too greedy, too thoughtless.

The same report says that a Wal-Mart in Arkansas had to be closed because of a stampede, although the store wouldn’t confirm that. Another news report I read interviewed a woman who says she usually spends $2,000 for her two kids — ages 3 and 6 — but she’s cutting back this year to half that.

Does anyone else see something wrong with this excess? I’m no Scrooge. I love to holiday shop for my loved ones, and I get into the spirit of it all, too. It’s fun to see my little ones’ delighted faces on Christmas morning when they get a toy they really wanted.

But Black Friday and its sidekick, Thanksgiving Day, have turned into a zoo.  People wait all night for a store to open to get bargain. They get up in the middle of the night. They shop before the sun is up. And, yes, there are some good bargains to be had. But much of the merchandise isn’t even on sale. And certainly nothing is cheap enough to warrant stampeding and shopping so frantically that you cause another’s death.

Here’s my solution for Black Friday shoppers: Buy less. You’ll save money that way. Don’t spend $1,000 per kid; spend $100 or $50, depending on the age of the kid. I’m not even sure how that mom who usually spends $1,000 on a 3-year-old does it. Toddler toys are pretty inexpensive, so that kid must get a truckload. A bonus: You won’t start the new year in debt.

I don’t mean to pick on anyone. I realize most Black Friday shoppers aren’t involved in stampedes. But I do object to the commercialization of Christmas and the perpetuation of excess that Black Friday represents. Does it really help your kids to get a mountain of toys at Christmas? Does that really mean they are more loved than the kids who get a handful?

Maybe people wouldn’t be in a such a frenzy to get bargains if they were spending within their means. If you really can’t afford a big-screen TV, don’t buy one. Then you won’t have to beat another shopper to get the last one that’s half off, but still more than you can really afford.

In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll admit that we I mean Santa are buying our two kids, ages 8 and 6, a Wii this Christmas. We thought about it lot, we budgeted for it, and that will be pretty much all they’ll get, along with some games to go with it and stocking stuffers. So I understand that sometimes holidays are worth a splurge. (We bought it last week, by the way, and we got it for the same price that Black Friday shoppers are getting it today.)

And I understand it’s fun to open presents. I understand some love the thrill of the chase. But wouldn’t it make more sense to spread the so-called “Black Friday” sales out over a week, so people weren’t going nuts? I bet that Wal-Mart employee  who died would have wished that’s the way it was.

What do you think?

bitchy mommy

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