This column is a good-bye to Jdimytai Damour, the 34-year-old temporary Wal-Mart employee who was trampled to death this past Friday in Long Island.
Trampled to death! What the fuck! That‘s how Mufasa died! Trampled by wildebeests that didn‘t know any better. I suppose there‘s no real difference between the mindless animals in The Lion King and the stampede of people bum rushing a Wal-Mart at five in the morning. I know times are tough but, shit, you just killed a man! All to get the latest PlayStation for a bargain price. Picture this guy up at 5 a.m. to face the insanity and chaos that is middle America‘s dealing with the economic recession and he ends up paying with his life. Hah, how ironic.
The 2,000 people that contributed to Jdimaytai‘s death (I prefer first name basis, even though I can‘t pronounce it) were all standing in what was referred to as the “Blitz Line.“ Again, what the fuck! Say “blitz“ and I automatically think of a 300-pound dude in heavy padding and a helmet charging to knock down, well, another 300-pound dude in heavy padding and a helmet. Not only did this employee not have padding or a helmet, but he only weighed 270 pounds. Compared to the cumulative 320,000 pounds that crushed him, the poor guy didn‘t stand a chance.
So these animals, which knocked down and ran this dude over right after they pushed through the doors and barricades constraining them, continued to sprint by while the paramedics were trying to save his life.
Then, oh man, then they go holiday shopping.
Probably humming Christmas carols and buying candy canes. To me, there is something particularly savage about that. It‘s an image that really accurately portrays the moment where a human being‘s life is no longer considered priceless but rather is worth less than the latest batch of holiday opiate.
I can be hypersensitive sometimes. This might be another case of me investing way too much emotion into something that is trivial in the “greater picture.“ There‘s genocide, an AIDS epidemic, murder in the streets every day and I can‘t get over the death of this one person on the other side of the country that may not have even been a good person.
But no! It‘s not trivial. It‘s legit and I fucking know it. Good person or not, Jdimytai Damour died in vain. Our greed and obsession with consumption literally took over this guy‘s life. There‘s a fine line between shopping and involuntary manslaughter. God dammit, I can‘t get over it. What is his family doing right now? His friends? Did he have children? He must have been survived by someone. While the rest of the mob gets to go home and put their gifts under the tree, one family will spend the holiday mourning the death of a son, brother or a friend. It wasn‘t the right time to go, there‘s no closure and there‘s no one to persecute for his death.
Although, the cops are trying to identify people that were “involved“ by watching the security tapes. OK, right. They are going to pinpoint a few individuals in a crazy crowd and give them manslaughter for this. I don‘t think you can blame any individual. Who I think should be blamed are the advertisers. They‘re the ones taking advantage of the masses. Millions sold in products and one man‘s death will probably get them that holiday bonus they‘ve been expecting.
I realize I‘m using strong language like animal, savage and masses, but all I can imagine are the wildebeests in The Lion King. They didn‘t give a shit whether they were crushing the King or one of their own. Both the stampedes were caused by hungry hyenas who wanted to gain something out of it. The hyenas in the Disney movie wanted to take over the Pride Land, while the corporate hyenas want our capital and our devotion to keep consuming. And if it‘s going to cost a man his life, they‘ve successfully done their job.
Rest in peace, Jdimytai.
SARA KOHGADAI thinks one Black Friday death is one death too many. For tips on how to fight hyenas, either corporate or real, Google that. Then send them to email@example.com.