According to an itemized list of injuries and deaths on Black Friday Death Count, there have been 7 deaths and 90 injuries in black friday-related incidents since 2006. The causes listed range from drunk driving to pepper spray to trampling to gunshot wounds. Seriously, check it out. Like 8 people have been straight up shot over outrageous holiday savings.
In light of all this senseless violence, it’s easy to say things like “Well that’s just insane! We need to put a stop to this!” Slow your roll there, comrade. Let’s give the brutality of feral capitalism a fair shake before we dissolve the good ol’ United States of America and reform as the People’s Republic of Never Curb-Stomping Anybody Over a TV.
The first death attributed to black friday shopping took place in 2008. 5 years ago. That’s an incredibly recent phenomenon, don’t you think? The obvious question to ask is “what happened that year? What caused such a frenzy that a worker was trampled by seething masses of consumers?” Allow me to elucidate this for you.
This man was killed not by the crushing feet of a thousand morbidly obese shoppers, but by something far more powerful: savings. This is the first time in recorded history that a deal was so good it actually killed a guy who was standing too close. 2008 marks the year that we discovered our collective moral threshold, the year where a human life was not measured in potential, hopes, or dreams, but in markdowns. This individual was stripped of his everything not for the sake of cost, but for the temporary absence thereof. Brutal.
I mean, I guess technically he was.
“How is this acceptable?” you may ask. That’s an easy one. Darwin posits in his work On The Origin of Species that natural selection is a driving force behind evolution. In short, members of a population who exhibit traits beneficial to their continued survival (in this case subscriptions to Amazon Prime and Netflix) will have a greater chance of passing on their genetic material. Conversely, members of that population who exhibit traits that detract from their chances of survival (in this case the desire to leave their home for any reason whatsoever on black friday) will probably get fucking shot and bleed out in a Toys ‘R’ Us parking lot with a tamagotchi or some shit clutched in their cold, stiff hands. This is the natural order of things; as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be.
Frankly, I’m shocked that the toll has been so low in terms of human life. Once the line was crossed and murder was on the table, I’d figured this would be a no holds barred blood bath a la The Purge. It’s not too late to get that special someone on your list an authentic human scalp, or perhaps a loved one whose been sentenced to 25 years in prison. There’s still 2 weeks until Christmas, get out there and fuck some shit up.