I am well aware people die every day because of greed and stupidity, in alarming numbers, and have been for thousands of years.
This man died because someone wanted a 50″ plasma HDTV for $798, or a Bissel vacuum for $28, or a really good digital camera for $69. Or maybe it was some newly-released DVDs for $9 each. Or some other equally unnecessary stuff.
This man’s name was Jdimytai Damour, 34 years old, and he was a temporary worker at a WalMart on Long Island, New York. When he helped open the doors at WalMart at 5 a.m. that day, he was trampled to death by shoppers. It was probably an accident . . . . maybe the people who knocked him down didn’t even realize they did it — they were too intent on getting in to those “bargains” before someone else beat them to it. Maybe the people who trampled on him as they rushed into the store were not even aware there was a person beneath their feet. Four other people were knocked down and injured that morning, and had to be taken to the hospital for treatment. Perhaps the people who killed Damour were simply trying to keep their footing as the people behind them pushed into the store to buy “The Incredible Hulk” before all the store’s copies were gone.
Police are looking at surveillance tapes to try to determine what happened, to see if someone should be charged for manslaughter. It would be a difficult case to prove. I am sincerely hoping someone sues WalMart. The store’s management says they hired security, but obviously it was not enough. WalMart is very good at fanning the American public’s greed, and when they purposely have only a few of the incredibly low-priced items on sale they create a frenzy on the part of shoppers who have been hard hit by the current economy. Personally, I refuse to go into a WalMart ever again; but then, I haven’t been in one for years for other economic, social, and political reasons.
This is one of those tragedies that may never be shown to have “a” culprit. And since the blame will be defused, perhaps no one will be punished. Do we blame the advertising industry, servant of Big Business since the 1950s, whipping up American desires to consume more? Do we blame Big Business? Do we blame the tendency of the Republican Party to cater to Big Business? Do we blame the individual greed of citizens of the U.S., who consume far more of the Earth’s resources per capita than any other nation?
Meanwhile, I am appalled there has been so little discussion of this senseless death. Perhaps we have become inured, since senseless death occurs by the minute, all around the world. But I see Damour’s death as an indictment of Big Business in the U.S., and the advertising industry, and the rampant greed of so many U.S. citizens.
I mourn Jdimytai Damour.