Pepper Spraying at Walmart

You see, this is why we can’t have nice things cheap crap made by underpaid and abused sweatshop workers in unsafe working conditions in China.

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About Ed Brayton

After spending several years touring the country as a stand up comedian, Ed Brayton tired of explaining his jokes to small groups of dazed illiterates and turned to writing as the most common outlet for the voices in his head. He has appeared on the Rachel Maddow Show and the Thom Hartmann Show, and is almost certain that he is the only person ever to make fun of Chuck Norris on C-SPAN.

  • leftwingfox

    God damn it.

    This “Door Crasher” stuff seriously needs to be banned, or at least the departments which offer them with no form of effective crowd control should be open to liability. People scream about “personal responsibility”, and yet the people who are directly responsible for creating these KNOWN volatile situations are left off the hook.

    You want people in a store and not killing each other? Do a lottery: give everyone who comes through the door a ticket and a hand stamp, then call the numbers every 5-10 minutes. There, you still have the loss leader, and have prevented the crush of people killing each other. Problem solved.

  • slc1

    Let’s not label all products produced in China cheap crap. Apple computers are mostly manufactured in China; they may be crap but they most certainly are not cheap crap.

  • Who Knows?
  • http://www.rodlamkey.net reverendrodney

    Cheap crap from China? Ask any artist. Paints and brushes and canvases made in China are total crap.

    That they are made in sweatshops by underpaid workers makes them repulsive as well.

  • Freeman

    And that ain’t all. One of their rent-a-cops body-slammed a grandfather they were arresting for suspected shoplifting (he probably wasn’t – read the story), knocking him out cold for 10 minutes.

    The Arizona police are promising the usual mock investigation. Yeah, right. I trust people with this attitude: Yet Assistant Chief Larry Hall did tell KNXV earlier in the day that Newman had begun to struggle after getting hurt, saying he was aggressive and escalated the situation. “There’s a whole other side to this story that wasn’t videotaped,” Hall said. “There is nothing, on the surface, (that) deems our officer acted inappropriate at this time.” So face-slamming a suspect into a concrete floor is “appropriate” under what circumstances, Hall? Are you running an American police force or a North Korean one?

    Looks like Hall has already answered my question. I see they’re now getting their story together: According to Assistant Police Chief Larry Hall, 54-year-old Jerald Newman “began flailing his arms” when they asked him about the video game. This somehow led to Newman being cuffed. “As the officer put handcuffs on the suspect, he resisted arrest, flailing his arms and pulling away from the officer backing up,” Hall says. How did Newman flail his arms while he was being cuffed? Hall tells ABC: “‘The officer got one cuff on him and the gentleman was like, ‘I’m not going to jail!’. Hall claims that Newman had tried to run out of the store, and that’s when police ‘did a leg sweep'”

    Contrast that with credible eyewitness reports. Notice from the CNN article that a CNN reporter witnessed the entire thing: David Chadd, a CNN iReporter from Las Vegas, was among the crowd shopping for video games set up in the Walmart’s grocery section. He said Newman “was not resisting” arrest as he was led away from the crowd by a police officer. That officer, Chadd said, then suddenly hooked the suspect around the leg, grabbed him and “slammed him face first into the ground.” “It was like a bowling ball hitting the ground, that’s how bad it was,” he said. The victim is described by his family as a custom furniture maker who preaches through the California prison system. They’re not going to have the usual easy “cop’s word vs. suspect’s word” advantage on this one. I predict the AZPD settles quietly for a hefty sum. They don’t usually fight when faced with a level playing field. I also predict this has zero effect on their use-of-force policies. I know, I know, easy predictions.

    Meanwhile, does WalMart condone police brutality carried out by their hired muscle? Here’s their statement, You decide: Walmart spokeswoman Ashley Hardie said the retail giant was aware of the incident. “We are concerned whenever there is an incident involving a customer at one of our stores,” Hardie said. “We are in contact with the local police and are sharing any information we have with them.”

    WalMart hyped Black Friday with TV ads depicting people “training” to “compete” in the “battle” for the bargains. The TV news is reporting record sales and downplaying the mayhem. We’re only going to see more and more of this in the future.

    My family will no longer be shopping at WalMart or Sam’s Club, and I’m writing them to tell them why. They’ve made it clear that their facilities are unsafe by design and their security practices are intended only to protect merchandise and have nothing whatsoever to do with the safety of the public they invite into their stores. No thank you please.

    Excessive force seems to be the order of the day. We’re going to see a lot more of it unless we take a firm stand against it every way we can, every time we see it. Fight back politically now or fight against a well-armed, well-organized oppressive force with bullets later, our choice.

  • http://rockstarramblings.blogspot.com/ Bronze Dog

    I’m in a small enough town that I don’t experience significant craziness during Black Fridays, just crowded aisles and long checkout lines. Though I suspect I might just be a combination of lucky and/or ignorant on the local level. It probably helps that I avoid Wal-Mart.

    I’d definitely approve of some sort of controlled scheme for Black Friday deals, like the kind leftwingfox describes. The goal is to remove violence as a means to obtain whatever’s hot this year.

  • Infophile

    Perhaps this is an attempt to get arrested for using pepper spray, so that she can then use this case as precedent against cops who pepper-sprayed non-violent protestors. (Pepper-spraying cops directly would have been more effective, but likely suicidal.)

    Then again… This should probably be shelved alongside the theories that Obama is trying to create a Supreme Court precedent against everything he’s been doing since he’s entered office. There should be a law for this: Never ascribe to a crazy gambit that which can be ascribed to malice.

  • http://drx.typepad.com Dr X

    There was also Green Acres on Sunrise Highway Valley Stream LI a couple of years ago.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/29/business/29walmart.html?pagewanted=all

    Like I was saying in another thread, madness is part of the human condition. Black Friday brings it out, quite deliberately. They want people to get a little nuts. It’s good for business when people with credit cards start losing their minds in a retail frenzy, but it’s dangerous.

  • quagmire

    From the article:

    The police are also looking into her method of payment to quickly track down the woman through a credit card or check payment.

    So apparently she was allowed to remain in the store and purchase items AFTER assaulting other customers?

  • leftwingfox

    So apparently she was allowed to remain in the store and purchase items AFTER assaulting other customers?

    If I were making Walmart wages, I too would not be interested in stopping a person who is armed and proven willing to use that weapon at the slightest provocation.

  • http://kamakanui.zenfolio.com Kamaka

    Christmas…Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Men (women, perhaps not so much), let’s fight over the gifts we want to give.

    The christers can keep their “most wonderful time of the year” if all it means to them is consumption and shopping wars. Pepper spray? Is someone making this up?

    The vast, society-wide Santa conspiracy to trick kids into believing nonsense doesn’t do much for me either. Just last Thursday, I had to catch myself from telling a kid Santa is make-believe.

    Yikes! If I had said that, I would have been a bad, bad guy! Scrooge, even!

  • Pinky

    And the fat cats in corporate headquarters throughout the US and the world sit back and laugh at the behavior of their well indoctrinated serfs.

    When Walmart’s cankerous carcass crawled into my area a few years ago, I suggested to everyone I knew that they should not shop at the store and gave them the many reasons I had researched.

    All I received back (even from family members) was a deer in the headlights stare and a shrug of their shoulders as they marched off like good little corporate robots to worship the big box of our financial downfall.

    The shameful shoppers did their duty well purchasing plastic crap made by the slave labor of Chinese prisoners never once allowing a shred of concern for their local business people to touch their shriveled hearts.

    The ‘shop till you drop’ crowd better enjoy this interregnum of wallowing in Walmart’s sordid sales before Walmart is the only work to be found in town and prices soar beyond their health insurance free, minimum wages.

  • http://polrant@blogspot.com democommie

    Much of what Wal-Mart and other big boxes sell IS cheap, chinese crap. This is not because the Chinese cannot do better; it is because they are smart enough to make a profit no matter how much they’re lowballed by buyers. The prison slave labor and other things are certainly a human rights problem, but let’s don’t think that China can’t do decent product.

    There’s a very good chance that I already posted this, but I don’t see it on this thread.

    “In a disturbing story of out California, at least twenty people, including some children, were injured during the Black Friday rush at a San Fernando Valley Walmart. In an effort to be the first to get her hands on Xbox gaming consoles and Wii video games, one woman actually pepper-sprayed her fellow shoppers!

    Bob Decastro reported that police are still looking for the woman, who was actually able to check out and buy an Xbox 360 at half price! Decastro added that the store stayed open and shoppers went about their business after the incident.”

    from here: http://foxnewsinsider.com/2011/11/25/shocking-story-20-injured-in-black-friday-pepper-spray-attack/

    So, when it interrupts the shoppin’frenzy it IS badstuff, as opposed to foodstuff? Foxing hypocrites.”

  • http://motherwell.livejournal.com/ Raging Bee

    Another good point from leftwingfox: WalMart’s employees should have done more to make their premises more secure, but…well…they’re really not paid enough to justify risking their own safety, and apparently WalMart was too cheap to pay for actual security.

    (Which strikes me as horiffically shortsighted, even by WalMart corporatist standards: if they don’t have enough security to keep customers from assaulting each other, on their own turf, then they don’t have enough security to prevent shoplifting on said turf.)

  • Tualha

    She should become a policewoman, then she can pepper-spray as many people as she wants with no repercussions.

  • Who Knows?

    if they don’t have enough security to keep customers from assaulting each other, on their own turf, then they don’t have enough security to prevent shoplifting on said turf

    Security was too busy looking out for shoplifters to worry about what customers were doing to each other.

  • Azkyroth

    And the fat cats in corporate headquarters throughout the US and the world sit back and laugh at the behavior of their well indoctrinated serfs.

    When Walmart’s cankerous carcass crawled into my area a few years ago, I suggested to everyone I knew that they should not shop at the store and gave them the many reasons I had researched.

    All I received back (even from family members) was a deer in the headlights stare and a shrug of their shoulders as they marched off like good little corporate robots to worship the big box of our financial downfall.

    The shameful shoppers did their duty well purchasing plastic crap made by the slave labor of Chinese prisoners never once allowing a shred of concern for their local business people to touch their shriveled hearts.

    The ‘shop till you drop’ crowd better enjoy this interregnum of wallowing in Walmart’s sordid sales before Walmart is the only work to be found in town and prices soar beyond their health insurance free, minimum wages.

    Weren’t you just complaining about socialists in the “conservative humor” thread? O.o

  • Freeman

    Just a little curious why my previous comment spent a day in “moderation pending” purgatory and then disappeared. What’d I say that needed to be censored from this forum?

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