Transforming Black Friday

Jdimytai Damour NYT 11:29:08
Jdimytai Damour
NYT 11/29/08

There's been a lot of activity in the blogosphere in reaction to Jdimytai Damour's terrible death on Black Friday. Damour had been working at the Long-Island Wal-Mart for only a week or so when he was trampled to death by out-of-control shoppers the day after Thanksgiving. Amongst garden bloggers, Bamboo Geek, for instance, suggested that we “Dump the "Black Friday" Tradition." I wish we could, but that's probably too much to hope for, so here's a distant second best.

Imagine this: people outside big shopping outlets carrying signs that say, "Remember Jdimytai Damour" on Black Friday next year–and the year after—and the next. We could hand out black armbands to remind people to remember that man and to be kind to one another.

There’s a chance, just a chance, I think, that people wearing these bands, seeing them on other’s arms, would slow down a little, just enough to see one another’s faces, and in those faces, their shared humanity.

Is this possible? Can we do it?

3 Responses to Transforming Black Friday

  1. Sounds like a great idea Kate. Could possibly work.

  2. I long ago dumped the “Black Friday” tradition. In fact, I never really participated in it because I hate shopping even at the best of times and most of all when surrounded by thousands of frantic, bad-tempered shoppers. But this incident just absolutely sickens and appalls me for what it says about us as a people. What a comment on the times we live in. One can only hope that it will bring people up short and make them stop and think about their actions and their priorities.

  3. Let’s try this again without the horrid pre-coffee grammatical blunders…
    You know a society is ready for the compost heap when SHOPPING lead to a situation like this.
    It’s not like it was people stricken by poverty and war waiting for humanitarian aid, but people waiting for those ‘great deals’ at Wal-Mart. Ugh.
    I feel terrible what has happened to Jdimytai Damour, and to others who were injured during this incident (was their a pregnant woman as well??).
    I think yours is a grand idea Kate, I just hope that people can stop being rabid consumers for at least a moment to reflect on damage done. And perhaps stop shopping at these places altogether.

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