2 UPDATES: In Memoriam: His name was Jdimytai Damour of Jamaica, Queens, New York City!
I guess written words are to few to describe the horror of what took place last Friday. So much in fact, that as this was originally Saturdays second post, it has taken me this long to write out anything substantial. I will first start with Chris Thompson's response, as maybe that can begin to shed some sorrow on America's collective soul.
What have we come to?
That people have taken cell phone footage and sold it to the highest bidder (CBS) of the rescue attempt and willingly made commentary degrading the rescue officers. All the while it was their negligence and mob mentality that caused this tragedy in the first place. I still don't know the name of the man who died. But what is worse, is America doesn't even care to know his name.
They have already wrote it off as Wal*Mart's fault!
When the fact remains that within a free market capitalist society it is ours and only ours by choosing to be manipulated by corporate greed and material things, rather than recognizing the value of one human life. We still shop even after trampling a man to death and putting an expectant mother in jeopardy of loosing her child. For to continuing to celebrate a holiday that celebrates anything but what occurred to the ninth degree; I am sitting here trembling as I write this out. Five days have gone by and we still don't know his name, his family, his life.
Today ABC's Good Morning America is celebrating Brittney Spears birthday, and no one seems to hold the individuals responsible for this tragedy accountable for anything. May we all take a moment to realize what we have done to Christmas? We have turned the Birth of the God Child from a season of sacrifice and new life, into a season of greed and death, after all the love of money is the root of all evil.
Who stood up for this man, for this child, for you?
What does this say about us and our Country, the land of the free the home of the brave? Before I continue here is, a Douche Bag of the Day award from Phillip DeFranco for all involved in the tragedy.
So what should happen now?
I realize this is going to be strict, and very Libertarian of me to suggest, but:
- People who were involved in the stampede should be arrested for involuntary manslaughter. They don't need to serve time but this man deserves justice, especially since he was denied mercy.
- They and Wal*Mart should be forced to pay for his death benefit to his family and for his children and the infant in the womb, if it survives, to go to college.
- Change the way business is done in this country by forcing through your choice of patronage of establishments and where your money is spent!
- Help for the family of the employee and the baby that was compromised.
- We need to find out the man's name and quit objectifying this tragedy.
- We should rename the Friday after Thanksgiving in his honor and memory
- Never forget the tragedy that could have been prevented if we as one take a stand that we truly are a people of honor and sacrifice for our fellow man.
Wal*Mart Worker Killed In Black Friday StampedeUPDATE 2: Damour was 270 pounds and stood 6 feet 5 inches tall and placed in the doorway by Wal*Mart solely because of his size, with no security experience what so ever. All the Security staff was inside the store rather than outside controlling the crowd and police were on scene 2 hours earlier but had left! He died of asphyxiation from the trampling; this means folks, Jdimitai Damour was literally crucified for our Country's greed. What has this country become? I dare to even begin to speculate. We have one chance to change course before we become what our founding fathers feared for sure. It is time to pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and out Sacred honour once again!
by Kathy Carvajal, Producer | Fox News NYC
Valley Stream, NY -- A Queens man who worked at the Wal*Mart in the Green Acres Mall on Long Island was killed Friday morning. Nassau police say Jdimytai Damour was knocked to the ground by a massive crowd of holiday shoppers rushing into the store around 5 a.m. Damour of Jamaica, Queens, was pronounced at Franklin Hospital Medical Center. Cops say a 28-year-old pregnant woman was also injured. She was taken to a local hospital. Three other shoppers suffered minor injuries. The Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death.Wal*Mart issued the following statement following the deadly stampede:Police Try to ID Shoppers in Wal*Mart Trampling Death Surveillance Tape
"The safety and security of our customers and associates is our top priority. A tragic situation occurred this morning prior to opening at our Valley Stream, NY location. We are saddened to report that a gentleman who was working for a temporary agency on our behalf died following the incident and a few of our customers were injured. Our thoughts and prayers are with them and their families at this difficult time. At this point, facts are still being assembled and we are working closely with the Nassau County Police as they investigate what occurred. As there is still an ongoing investigation, any further comment would be best served coming from them."
FOX NEWS with The Associated Press Monday, December 01, 2008
NEW YORK - Officials are combing through surveillance tape of a post-Thanksgiving shopper stampede that killed a Wal*Mart worker in New York to identify individual shoppers who may be responsible, but they say it could be difficult to bring criminal charges. "We are reviewing film of all places from individual cell phones, from cameras that are in place in the store, trying to identify, if in fact we can identify, people that are culpable in this," Nassau County Police Commissioner Lawrence Mulvey told FOX News. "And it is difficult because a lot of people in the front of the line were pushed forward, and it’s difficult for us to decipher who is more responsible in all of this." Mulvey conceded the case would be "very difficult ... for us to make."
The brutal death of the employee rattled shoppers even as they flocked to the Valley Stream store a day later. "It felt a little freakish," customer Ellie Berhun, 48, told the Daily News. "Some man lost his life because a VCR was on sale? Please. It's just too sad for words."
Police said the temporary worker (*who came from a temporary agency and was doing maintenance work at the store*), Jdimytai Damour, 34, was mowed down as about 2,000 bargain-hunters surged into the store at Friday's 5 a.m. opening, leaving a metal portion of the door frame crumpled like an accordion. Other workers were knocked to the ground as they tried to rescue Damour, and customers simply stepped over him and kept shopping even as the store announced it was closing because of the death, police and witnesses said..... Bentonville, Arkansas based Wal*Mart said it added staffers and outside security workers and put up barricades to try to prepare for the crush. But police spokesman Detective Lt. Michael Fleming said Friday that security was inadequate for a scene he called "utter chaos." Criminal charges are possible, but identifying anyone in the store's videos may prove difficult, Fleming said....
(Source: FOX NEWS)
Wal*Mart Worker Trampled to Death Lacked Training, Attorney SaysAs some in the industry have already figured out, there is a solution:
FOX NEWS via THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Monday, December 01, 2008
MINEOLA, N.Y. - A worker trampled to death when customers stormed a Wal*Mart for bargains on the day after Thanksgiving had no experience in crowd control and was placed at the entrance because of his hulking frame, police and a lawyer said Monday. The details about the deadly stampede came out as police pored over video surveillance provided by the store while considering possible criminal charges. Lawyers were also preparing to sue over the episode.
Nassau County Police Commissioner Lawrence Mulvey noted that the worker, Jdimytai Damour, was 6 feet 5 and 270 pounds, making the trampling all the more stunning. He was killed when a crowd estimated at 2,000 strong broke down the electronic doors in frantic pursuit of bargains on big-screen TVs, clothing and other items. "Literally anyone, those hundreds of people who did make their way into the store, literally had to step over or around him or unfortunately on him to get into the Wal*Mart store," said Mulvey. Mulvey said an autopsy found that Damour, 34, died of asphyxiation related to his trampling, and he conceded that it would be difficult to file criminal charges against any of the shoppers. "It goes beyond identifying specific people to make a case," Mulvey said. "You have to establish recklessness or intent to harm, which led to his death."
Attorney Jordan Hecht, who represents Damour's three sisters, said the family declined to make any public statements about the man's death. Funeral arrangements were pending, he said. Hecht said Damour had been working at the Wal*Mart only for about a week and was hired through an employment agency that provides temporary staffing. Damour had not been trained for any security assignments and had no background in crowd control, he said. A call seeking comment from the employment agency was not returned.... [previously covered information removed, 2ip] ....Hecht said that he was considering a lawsuit but that no decision had been made. Two other injured shoppers filed a notice of claim Monday, the first step toward proceeding with a lawsuit. At least four other people were treated at hospitals and released, including a woman who was eight months pregnant.
Mulvey said while investigators are still piecing together details, it is apparent that the Wal*Mart store lacked adequate security to handle the crowds of shoppers that converged on Friday morning. "In fact, security was inside the store and not outside organizing, arranging and planning for this anticipated opening," Mulvey said. Police officers had been called to the scene at about 3 a.m. but left after about a half-hour, he said. The crowd -then estimated at about 400- was not unruly at that time.
The National Retail Federation, the industry's largest group, was unaware of any other store workers ever dying on the job in the post-Thanksgiving rush. Shoppers around the country line up early outside stores on the day after Thanksgiving in the annual bargain-hunting ritual known as Black Friday. It got that name because it has historically been the day stores broke into profitability for the full year.LINKS: Christopher Thompson MySpace | YouTube | YouTubeMusic
Burt P. Flickinger III, managing director of Strategic Resource Group, a retail-consulting firm, said retailers quickly learned they can attract massive crowds if they promise amazing savings and limit the inventory or availability of the sale items to a few hours. A number of retailers have opted to distribute vouchers or organize the sales in other ways to "cut down on the tsunami of shoppers entering the store all at once," he said. "There are so many retailers doing it the right way, it seems senseless there wasn't strategic and operational planning here," Flickinger said.
In addition to not knowing how much inventory may be available on a sale item, shoppers often don't know the exact location where the merchandise is kept, he said. "They get in early and run the retail racetrack," Flickinger said. "It is a recipe for disaster," the police commissioner said. "And that's what happened here."
TRIBUTE: Slouching Towards Bethlehem: The title of this post makes reference with gratitude to the AD1919 poem The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats (1865-1939) of Ireland. Certain portions of the text were highlighted directly in the video above by Bright Eyes in their 2007 Country debut Cassadaga in the song Four Winds and Joni Mitchell's 1991 album Night Ride Home in which she put the entire poem to song.
EDITED (*) FOR SPACE: Eclipticized text taken from the bottom of the article and moved up.