Sunday, January 28, 2018

California woman sues Walmart for racial profiling

A woman in California noticed that products marketed targeting a specific race are locked in glass cabinets at Walmart while similar products nearby marketed for other races are not locked up.

The story was seen on Moonbattery, a site with crazy political things, that links to Breitbart who did the original reporting.

Moonbattery suggests Walmart has three options:

1. Remove the locked cases and let thieves help themselves with law-abiding shoppers picking up the tab for theft through higher prices for everything.

2. Lock up the other products too, inconveniencing everyone because of the lawlessness of a minority.

3. Issue a statement that those who don't want to be treated like thieves should refrain from stealing lawn flamingos. 

Moonbattery concludes, since #3 is the only one that make sense it can be ruled out immediately.

Such nonsense. Those are not the only options. 

That doesn't address the law suit. Walmart can also go to court and prevail. Or lose. They can increase prices on lawn flamingos and leave all other products unaffected. That still affects innocent lawn flamingo purchasers but it goes with the territory of that particular product for its unique theft problem. 

The thing is, we have a word for this phenomenon and it's hurtful, "profiling." And it  is actual forensic profiling. The numbers indicate this specific item is most frequently shoplifted, so this specific item is protected specifically. By the numbers, not by bias and not by ill feelings, one type of person most often buys lawn flamingos and all marketing targets this type person, so easily identified by sight, really is genuine profiling. So what? It's how we make sense of the world. No apologies if by no fault of your own you find yourself in the profiled group. Fact: you are profiled in a group with a strong tendency to nick lawn flamingos. Perhaps out of embarrassment. Perhaps due to being short of cash. Perhaps because lawn flamingos are overly expensive due to constant theft. Whatever. Too bad for you. The world is not fair. 

One last thing, since the term profiling is used in its hot button political sense in the lawsuit, we can look at the political cause of the profiling. This group targeted and profiled for marketing and for protecting against theft is also targeted by a specific political party with their own marketing and with tremendous success over generations, to receive lagniappes from government so long as there is no man in the household. So long as a woman is straddled with raising children without the assistance of a husband for support. So this group, by the numbers, by the targeting, is well know to have adapted to take advantage of these benefits, so that over time they've become the most fatherless family of all the other groups so well tracked and studied, and that is straight up sensible professional profiling. Genuinely profiled. So there is a history through generations where there is no father to discipline and train and show how to exist without stealing. 

Maybe it's best to read the articles yourself. I have a tendency to mix up crucial elements. My reading comprehension is poor sometimes.


ricpic said...

"Caucasian products." And I'm not allowed to hate schvartzes?

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

The smell that comes off an enclosure of pink flamingos is enough to put you off your food.

edutcher said...

Wal, y'all know them Walmarts was started fo' crackas.

FullMoon said...

Powdered baby formula locked up also. Used for cutting heroin.

Amartel said...

The razor blades are all on lock down at my local drug store. Also Sonicare and other electric toothbrush heads. Seems like a fairly nonrace-based lock down.

The funny thing is that there's a big red button next to the locked-down goods. It's there so you can summon a staff person to unlock your purchase. It says "Press for Service." I don't think it's hooked up to anything. I think what actually happens is that store personnel vaguely look over to lockdownland ever 5-10 minutes and if the same person (me) is still standing there pressing the button then maybe they'll come over and unlock my stuff.

Chip Ahoy said...

I've only seen spray paint at hardware stores locked down. When asked, the clerk didn't mention theft. They just said teenagers use it for graffiti. How locking it up changes that isn't clear.

Teenager: I'd like to buy a few jars of spray paint.

Hardware store clerk: What are you going to us it for.

Teenager: Uh ... I got a school project.

Hardware store clerk: Good. That's acceptable. Nice lad.

Teenager: Oh, I'll need a can of red to outline the yellow letters.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

I suggest she start stealing the white girl shit.

windbag said...

Stop selling those items and let the people discover how much pricier they are at the 7-Eleven on the corner.

chickelit said...

Cognac -- especially Hennessey -- is another "African American" product frequently locked up.

chickelit said...

WalMart could win the lawsuit simply by showing a judge/jury data for how many units of each product are lost each month or inventory cycle. If it goes missing, it gets locked up. No need to invoke race.

AllenS said...

My local hardware store knows what products are stolen, and all of those items that people want to steal now have been locked up.

ndspinelli said...

I know a guy who worked loss prevention for a large supermarket chain in Chicago called, Jewel. Theft from stores in the 'hood were 7-10 times higher than in white neighborhoods. So, if theft is putting your store in the red in the 'hood and you close it, you're "RAAACIST!"

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

I was at the Home Depot in Longmont a few months back. They were trying to help me re-key a new lock to match my existing locks. Nicest people and we sat and talked while I waited for the one guy who knew how to do the re-keying returned from lunch.
Anyway the discussion turned to shop-lifting and they told me that Home Depot loses $400,000 a year in stolen merchandise. they are not allowed to stop the thieves. They see the theives and they cannot do anything.

That is nuts right there. I can think of all sorts of ways to stop shoplifting. Hire someone in law enforcement to stop the thieves in the act and put the word out that that Home Depot is not a good place for shoplifting. Instead, they do the opposite and invite more. total insanity.

ndspinelli said...

Target is tough on shoplifters.

Amartel said...

Not surprised about Home Depot. They've got tons of stuff out in bins. Anyone can cruise by and just pocket it. They must have figured out a risk-benefit analysis of that sort of display and considered the likelihood of thieving. Not pursuing obvious shoplifters seems like a weird policy, though. I get that convenience store clerks are just supposed to fork over whatever's in the till and not die in the defense of Plaid Pantry but why not pursue shoplifters at a Home Depot? Take 'em out back and back hoe them. Hang their skins off the sign out front as a lesson to other thieves.

Dickin'Bimbos@Home said...

Some time ago, I was walking into a local King Soopers and I see this young-ish Hispanic looking girl walking out of the store, and boom, the police nabbed her and walked her back in. I assumed it was for shop-lifting. It was quite a display.
All you really need are some laws enforced, by law-enforcement. Enough people think you are easy pickings for shoplifting = suddenly 400,000 in merch is walking out the door.