I’m in the Charlotte airport on a brief layover before the next leg of a post Thsnksgiving trip. Already the early news of the day has carried stories of terrible behavior by shoppers out hunting shopping specials. The plane ito Charlotte was tittering over the woman charged with pepper spraying other shoppers to get a “competitive edge” over them. I’m sure by the end of the day there will be other stories to add to the news flotsam and equally as disturbing, or in the case of late night TV it will serve as fodder for cheap jokes and easy laughs. But at what cost to our sense of decency?
That kind of repressed and angry behavior seems to only be on the rise. Today it’s Los Angeles. Last week it’s a police officer spraying individuals at U-Cal/Davis. It didn’t take long for the wisecrackers to start cracking wise over the first, and I’ll bet before today’s news cycle finishes there will be cyber jokes in circulation.
But this behavior is no joke. This is not how we are to act or react to the things that are dragging society down. The irony of all this is that there are so many people who decry using the words “Merry Christmas,” and yet they don’t mind rushing out into the Black Friday frenzy to nab a bargain that retailers push on them in the name of “Christmas shopping” (and let’s not kid ourselves that just because you substitute “holiday” for “Christmas” we’re not building on the original idea of why most Americans celebrate this time of year).
But that idea is to be centered on something bigger than ourselves, something certainly better than a shopping bargain. We all like getting a bargain, but it’s not to be at the detriment of others. I say check your ego at the door before checking out with your purchases. Today’s news gives a black eye to Black Friday.