Black Friday Turns Ugly. Genuinely Ugly.

By  |  Friday, November 28, 2008 at 5:46 pm

Okay, I had some fun with my distaste for Black Friday earlier today, but this is serious stuff. A Wal-Mart employee was knocked to the floor by maniacal shoppers and killed today at a store on Long Island, in a riot that sent four other people (including a pregnant woman) to the hospital. (The crowd supposedly got even uglier when told that the store was going to shut down after the staffer’s death.) And two people were reportedly shot dead at a Toys “R” Us in Palm Desert, California, in an incident thay may or may not have been gang-related.

Can we all agree that there’s no discount on a 52-inch TV or a GPS device that is worth a single human life, or even the real risk of the loss of a single human life? And that American’s retailers should be damn careful about intentionally whipping teeming crowds of people into a frenzy?

Comparatively uninmportant side note: Sears.com crashed today, presumably under the weight of Black Friday traffic. It was down for about two hours.

Report on my day: I spent much of it bumming around bookstores in Northern California’s Sonoma county, getting a head start on my Christmas shopping. Got some good deals, too. I saw no angry crowds, didn’t have to engage in any fistfights, and don’t even remember standing in line for more than a couple of minutes…

 
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7 Comments For This Post

  1. PetieG Says:

    Yikes… i can see a line for a specific gadget, iphone/xbox, concert, etc.. but discount shopping… ?? Such a shame that us selfish americans act this way… somebody should be held accountable for this death and NOT just Walmart… they must have camera’s … who cracked open the doors, who pushed, stomped/trampled… Oh course this is the US!! how could i forget? there will be a multi-million dollar lawsuit…

  2. nia luvs ceddy Says:

    OMg thats so sad….the things people do for a sale.

  3. Yikes Says:

    Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks. And then, on Black Friday, people can be rude and selfish again.

  4. Kate Says:

    What gets me (aside from the horribleness of the whole death, of course) is that people were mad to leave the store because “they had been waiting in line since Thursday morning.” So, getting $50 off a gift for someone was more important than actually spending Thanksgiving with them?? 24 hours of your time spent outdoors waiting is less valuable than $50? Perspective much??

  5. dillywren Says:

    I can agree that there is no discount on ANY product worth a human life.

  6. bdkilgore Says:

    I think there’s quite a difference between the crowd you run into in a bookstore in Sonoma county and the one at a Walmart in Long Island.

  7. UnfortunateNYer Says:

    I think this will be very revealing to those not in the overcrowded, and often third-world, NYC area. NYC wants to tout that “if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere”. Well, now you can see why.

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