People of Walmart

We’ve all seen them, these hilarious photos of folks out and about wearing one ridiculous thing or another … usually captioned “People of Walmart.” I’ve laughed at them or even wondered how in the hell someone left the house dressed like they just crawled out of bed or whatever. But lately it has kind of disturbed me, the ease with which we just post photos (or pass them along) of unsuspecting people just out grocery shopping and living their lives. We probably don’t think of how much of an intrusion this is on their privacy … or even their dignity.

It seems harmless enough, these folks will never know, right? But I don’t think it is really harmless. We’re all human beings just out living our lives. I wonder: do these photos make us feel better about OURSELVES? If so, I think we might need to take a deeper look at why they do. Is it right for us to pass judgment on others because they dress so differently from us? i don’t think it’s any more right than when we laughed at what other kids wore when we were back in school. It’s like laughing at the “dorky” kid in school for wearing the “uncool” clothes or shoes or whatever or for reading that “weird” book, etc. What do our children learn from us when we encourage these attitudes?

It strikes me that it could also amount to a form of bullying possibly; poking fun at folks on a public scale and the worst part is that they don’t even know it. What a disgusting intrusion this is … how can we defend doing this just for a few laughs?

Can’t we celebrate our differences or at the very least, keep our judgmental thoughts to ourselves? How about we just restrict ourselves to a glance and an internal thought – must we share with the world and humiliate people????

Look – I’m as snarky and sarcastic as any of you (as those who know me can surely tell you) but I really do try to keep it discrete in regards to people and I honestly try to remind myself at all times of the truth that I am no better than anyone else I see on this planet.

It’s a very healthy thing to be able to laugh at ourselves but what does it say for us and our future when we are so entertained by the humiliation and judgment of our own?

What a sad parade …


I can’t say that I love Jesus

That would be a hollow claim

He did make some observations

And I’m quoting them today

Judge not lest ye be judged’

What a beautiful refrain

The studio audience disagrees

Have His lambs all gone astray?

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

‘You are lost and disillusioned’

What an awful thing to say

I know this show doesn’t flatter

It means nothing to me

I thought I might help them understand

What an ugly thing to see’

I am not an animal’

Subtitled under the screen

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

When I tried to tell my story

They cut me off to take a break

I sat silent 5 commercials

I had nothing left to say

Talk show host was index-carded

All organized and blank

The other guests were scared and hardened

What a sad parade, what a sad parade

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

Call me a leper

Richard G. White


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Richard G. White, 2007