What Would Jesus Buy

3065194050_41ee69f153_z

(David Halnes)

“When Black Friday comes,
I’ll stand down by the door
And catch the grey men when they
Dive from the fourteenth floor.”

Steely Dan

I don’t like Black Friday, but I do like Thanksgiving. It’s the least demanding of the major holidays. It doesn’t require that you write cards, buy presents or color eggs and prepare Easter baskets. You may be hosting a dinner or bringing dessert, wine or a side dish to someone else’s home, but that is tame in comparison to the financial bloodletting required of a true, red-blooded consumer on Christmas. Stop shopping and the terrorists win, remember?

I’ve never gone shopping on Black Friday. I’d rather spend a few dollars more and not be stampeded to death. Also, I am prone to panic attacks—especially in confined spaces—so it’s not the optimum environment for me in the first place.

Remember this one? “A 29-year-old shopper was pepper sprayed and arrested Thursday in a New Jersey Walmart after arguing with a store manager about a TV and attacking an officer, police said.”

Ah, sisterly and brotherly love at its best. There’s actually a site called Black Friday Death Count. Check it out if you don’t believe me.

We all like a bargain—maybe me more than most. I waited over a month to purchase an Anne Klein dress at Lord & Taylor because I knew they’d eventually mark it down. Patience has its virtues. After returning week after week, not only was it reduced by 40%, but I had a 20% coupon which brought it down to less than ½ the original cost. I was quite satisfied with myself over that one.

Back to the topic at hand. I was pleased to learn that Walmart employees in several states are planning a Black Friday walkout, asking for a more livable wage and safer working conditions. I think that’s fair, considering that the Walton Family, who owns Walmart, is the richest family in the U.S, with more wealth than Bill Gates and Warren Buffett combined. If Sam Walton’s dependents worked for their dividend checks this year, they would each receive $1.5 million every hour. Walmart workers get an average of $8.81 per hour and are routinely denied full-time work.

My experience with Walmart is limited to the children’s theater/literacy tour I did with Golden Books in 2000. Our little troupe performed on a stage in the Walmart parking lot (no kidding) in Bentonville, Arkansas on a snowy November afternoon. Bentonville is the site of the original store and corporate headquarters. The manager was less than cordial. Many of the very friendly cashiers were missing front teeth: the dental plan is only available to full-time employees.

Let me leave you with these kernels of wisdom from Reverend Billy of the Church of Stop Shopping:

We’re going to spread the good gospel through the Mall of America. You can walk away from the product! Drive the moneychangers out of the temple this year! We are all ending up inside these super malls! These products are taking over our lives! Stop shopping! Hallelujah! Change-a-lujah! Let’s change! We’re here in the heart of the Mall of America to urge you to join us and many other Americans in saving Christmas from the Shopocalypse!

Reverend Billy’s latest book, also made into a movie by Morgan Spurlock, is entitled What Would Jesus Buy?

Happy Thanksgiving to all and to all a good night!

 

 

8 thoughts on “What Would Jesus Buy

  1. Hear, hear! I’m making most of my gifts this year. I am lucky to say that almost everyone in my family is not in need, and we all have way more stuff than we can use. And my family would be happier to see me pay my bills than to have yet another shirt to put in a drawer and forget about. Happy Thanksgiving, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “I’d rather spend a few more dollars than be stampeded to death”, too!!! That line is too funny! I don’t like crowds, either, but as one who was “out there” with the masses today, I have to say that it was “organized chaos”. I’ve decided that everything now is a source of humor for me and something to write about…And today was ripe for all kinds of “possibilities”. Actually, had some fun conversations with a small group of people while waiting in line at Kohl’s. By the time we got up to the cashier’s kiosk, we were all laughing and “the best of friends”! I actually ran into one of them at the local Costco afterward and we were still laughing!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Jesus would not be buying anything. Jesus would be absolutely disgusted at the addiction to consumerism, materialism and money in modern American society. And I experct he would be outraged at all of the holier-than-thou “Christians” who are constantly hopping on the “family values” bandwagon while simultaneously vilifying organized labor, the minimum wage and free health care as “the evils of tyrannical socialism.”

    According to the New Testament, Jesus taught “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” I mean, I’m Jewish, for crying out loud, and even I know that Jesus taught that. So I’m absolutely revolted at all the self-proclaimed “Christians” who invoke Jesus’ name in one breath and expound upon the virtues of completely unregulated capitalism in the next.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello Erica,
    Humbly, I think Jesus will not be buying anything, because He did on the cross already. Rather, I think He would be reclaiming the lives of the many lined up and in the crowds, who have lost the real essence of the celebration.
    I appreciate the follow, Erica, and my best wishes for you in 2015 abound!

    Sally.

    Like

Your Thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s