Saturday, November 29, 2008

Tis the Season to be Brutal

Jdimytai Damour died for our sins this Christmas as 2000 bargain crazed shoppers shattered the glass sliding-doors at the Green Acres Mall Wal-Mart in Valley Stream, NY., and trampled the Wal-Mart employee to death.

Now some may find ironic the story of a man trampled to death by shoppers so eager to buy gifts for their loved ones that they would mindlessly kill a man whose only crime was trying to help them do so. Irony, however, requires that things turn out opposite to what one expects, and the death of Mr. Damour is exactly what one should expect as Americans replace the baby in the manger with the bargain at the mall.

In a culture that has turned the birth of God into a celebration of consumerist excess, the death of Mr. Damour is nothing but a holy sacrifice at the temple of America’s true religion: shopping. We shop to provide our lives with meaning, and shopping like every other religion the west has invented demands its deaths on the alter of faith.

According to one shopper’s report in the Associated Press, when people were told to leave the store because an employee had been killed, they refused, yelling: “I’ve been here since yesterday morning.” They simply kept on shopping. Well, of course. What else do you do in the temple of consumption if not consume? Indeed, had they left the store empty handed Mr. Damour’s death would have been in vain. He died because there is nothing we honor more than a sale, not even a human life.

While Mr. Damour was the only person to die on Black Friday, he was not the only person injured at that Wal-Mart. A pregnant woman was battered by the crowd as well. Here, irony does apply, as pro-life Christians are more than happy to kill a baby to get a bargain.

We will soon hear wild-eyed talk show pundits screaming about the War on Christmas, but their opposition to all things Constitutional misses the real war on Christmas waged not by Jews, Muslims, atheists, and secularists, but by Christians themselves whose religion has been highjacked by consumerism.

I admit to going out on Black Friday to see the spectacle, and to rent a video. The parking lot at the shopping center in my oh so Christian town were filled with angry people circling for an empty space like vultures waiting for a man to die. Once inside the store, the anger on the faces of the shoppers was palpable. There was a frenzy that I found truly frightening, and I left after only a few minutes sans video.

I am sorry Mr. Damour died. I am sorry for him, his family, for us, for America, for Christianity, and for Jesus who warned us that following him would lead to death, but who never imagined a man being martyred for a highly discounted bit of Chinese junk.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good fight.


Mano said...

Firstly congrats on 21 or 22 or 29 regular readers... (probably tens more of casual ones like myself, who log on every few weeks to be refreshed and inspired)

Secondly a minor synchronicity: I had just posted the following on Australia @ Christmas when I read your post. Two yids badmouthing yoshke panderer...

Australia @ Christmas

What a nauseating deluge of commodification
what a povery of thought and feeling
magazines and newspapers bursting with huge catalogues
of things and things and things
to ram down each others stockings like Foie Gras feed
down the throats of geese

what a meaningless orgy of evasion
as if buying what is shiny today and discarded tomorrow
could somehow substitute for husbands giving
their attention to wives
parents giving their attention to children
employees giving their attention to what they were hired to do
people giving attention to their environments

this is not giving
this is running as far from giving
as matter will allow

but at least mercy is shown
to millions of pigs and sheep
and cows
who receive their Christmas gift
as a bolt in the brain or a knife at the throat
and do not have to witness
the drunks and the glass wounds
and the emergency rooms
and the desperation induced
by the gap between
the adverts and the reality

I posted a link to your post on my blog

Rabbi Rami said...

Well done!