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  • Jeff Marker

    husband, dad, teacher, filmmaker, writer, film geek, musician, DIYer, vegetarian, Bulldog, Buckeye, Nighthawk

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Consumerism Kills

The classic, satirical film Network ends with Howard Beale being shot while on air.  The narrator proclaims that Beale was “the first person ever killed for poor ratings.”  It’s an audacious, ridiculous idea concocted to make an ideological point about America’s fascination with and thirst for televised violence.

Only, history has proven it’s not a ridiculous idea.  If reality TV has proven anything, it’s that we hunger not just for violence and depravity, but for real violence and depravity.

Well, here’s another ridiculous idea that seems right out of a satirical comedy: an average Joe, temporary Wal-Mart employee is trampled to death by shoppers who value low prices more than human life.  It’s the kind of thing an angry, ideologically driven screenwriter would come up with, and it’s only worthy of a TV movie – on a cable network.

Unfortunately, it’s a true story. Read about it here: Wal-Mart Worker Dies in Rush.

You can’t judge an entire culture by one event, but we’ve been building toward this for years.  Shame, shame on us.  Not shame on just Wal-Mart, or even shame on just the owners of all the stores who open their doors at absurd hours and whip up shoppers into a foamy frenzy.

Fact is, stores wouldn’t treat Black Friday as they do if we jackasses didn’t show up and spend money.  Pure and simple.  Shame on us for letting any holiday turn into the kind of event that makes this possible.  If you’re a Christian, you should be able to appreciate just how disgusting it is that Christmas, of all holidays, has become commericialized to this degree.

Who the hell have we become?  Shame on us.  There are 26 shopping days left until Christmas – plenty of time to change our behavior.


One Response

  1. […] for a good month and a half (not to mention being told how I should spend my money, but my friend Jeff has already said this better than I could).  Stop telling me that I have to be cheerful and wish for snow or else I am […]

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