Once again I want to look at another suburban trend and what it says about lives of quiet desperation in Johnson County.
Just this week grab and run thieves took more than $3k worth of merchandise at the Oak Park Macy’s store.
Of course any kind of crime is a bad thing but we have to look at this from a broader perspective.
Allow me to explain:
From the vantage point of KC Proper, at least I see there is opportunity to steal in the so-called "Golden Ghetto." Macy‘s gave up on Downtown Kansas City a few years ago and will never return. And the only so-called big box store in Midtown Kansas City requires a membership card just to gain entry into the place. Shopping in the urban core is akin to lockdown, so these "grab and run" shenanigans don’t really happen within or even near the loop.
Secondly, grab and run crosses cultures. I’ve heard that everyone from housewives to gangs of Asian teenagers in Southeast Asia have used this method to lift box stores of their goods.
In other words, grab and run is a consequence of the global economy. Box stores drove smaller retailers and merchants out of business and it’s not a case of customers not feeling any loyalty. There’s outright hostility toward these places and their cheap merchandise that’s fostering the downfall of the American economy.
Again, there’s never any justification for shoplifting but it’s important to put this crime in context.
Finally, this kind of theft in the suburbs during the holidays is yet another sign of desperation.
For most middle-class folks the economy hasn’t turned around yet and doesn’t look like it will any time soon. So expect the quotient of misery in the world and in JoCo to remain high as the lifestyle demands of this county can’t keep pace with reality on suburban streets.