Tag Archives: Target

Why I Do Need Feminism

This was originally going to be another of “Gordon’s Happy Monday Posts”. I’m serious, folks, I had every intention of changing things up from my typical doom-and-gloom tone and write about some lighthearted stuff for once. That’s what I had prepared for today. Wouldn’t ya know it, but I just happened to come across something so supremely stupid that I felt compelled to switch out our happy, uplifting topic with another message from the trenches.

What was that thing that robbed you all of sunshine and butterflies and stuff? It was a series of pictures on imgur of young women holding up signs explaining why they “didn’t need feminism” [sourced from the Who Needs Feminism? tumblr -Ed.]. I scrolled down, hoping at first they’d just be sarcastic comments, and once it became clear that wasn’t happening, that they’d really just be criticisms of the most off-the-wall elements of the movement (as Kat mentioned in her post this past Saturday).

They were not.

So let me take this time to go through ’em, picture by picture, and explain just how wrong they are. Continue reading

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Shame Day: Black Friday

I almost don’t feel like I should have to explain this post. Look at that image on the right, look at that wave of flesh and hunger, which I can only compare to the somewhat recently released World War Z trailer. They move like an organism, a living being that flows into each store, ravenously grabbing at whatever they can.

For the non-Americans among you, Black Friday is the day after American Thanksgiving, which sets off the Christmas shopping season. Last year at this time a few pretty significant events happened, none of which I can say are positive.

The first recorded death from the event happened in 2008, when an employee, once again at Walmart, was literally trampled to death by a wave of shoppers. The stampede could not be halted when other employees tried to help their coworker, and even police who arrived at the scene were shoved and pushed back.

Honestly, I don’t even know what else to say.

Every year the sale begins earlier and earlier, and for a while it was normal for shops to open at 6:00 am. Last year many retailers opened at midnight for the first time. Now, on Black Friday 2012, Walmart [again] and several other superstores have announced that they will be opening their stores at 8:00 pm Thanksgiving Day. This has prompted a very understandable call for a walkout among workers.

If the trend continues this image won’t even make sense anymore.

As a Canadian I’ve celebrated American Thanksgiving only once. It was a time that I spent with a loving family, where copious amounts of food was served and the itis was experienced by many. It was a time of relaxation and enjoying each other’s company, not camping outside superstores in the freezing cold or trampling the meek and lowly [see: Walmart employees] underneath our feet.

All I can say is Happy Thanksgiving, Americans. If you care about at least one retailer [Target] respecting a national holiday, you can sign a petition here. Enjoy your turkey.

An American Invasion

Attending college in the States means that I’ve missed a lot of goings-on in Canada. Apparently Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is a terrible mayor. I did not know this. On May 1st came to another realization, but one that filled me with far more trepidation than a mayor who has given up on his diet.

Driving through an old neighbourhood, my family and I saw that Canadian superstore Zellers was having a 50-80% off liquidation sale. A well-known chain in the country, the chain is a subsidiary of the Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC). After trying on a few jeans my brother asked the woman in charge of the change room what was happening, and she told us that this branch was becoming a Target.

Fastforward to me doing research on Wikipedia, and it turns out that in January of last year the Target Corporation purchased lease agreements for 220 Zellers stores for almost 2 billion dollars. The end result was 189 stores for the company, and of these 39 were resold to Walmart Canada. I was shocked by the idea of a prominent Canadian chain being bought out by an American company, but it doesn’t stop there.

The HBC is currently owned ( as of 2008) by New York-based company NRDC Equity Partners. This is a company that has its roots in the Canadian fur trade, the foundation of this country. Grade school children all over Canada learn from a very early age in history classes that it was the fur trade that brought people to this country, and that The Bay is the oldest commercial corporation in North America and one of the oldest in the world.

What bothers me is the knowledge that this country faces a sort of invasion coming from south of the 49th parallel. It’s no mystery that American companies have more money and sway than those in Canada, but it’s terrifying that they’re establishing themselves so firmly here. Just walking around in the heart of downtown yesterday and I saw a Panera Bread, yet another company that has spread into the north within the past five years.

Canada isn’t a world power in terms of military, but our impact on popular culture has been steadily increasing. I may be blowing this whole thing out of proportion, but I just don’t see a world that takes us seriously when all of our businesses are run by America.