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British Shops Act 1950

Posted on 2014.04.21 at 00:00
Current Location: 67114

The British Shops Act 1950 superseded and encompassed the Shops Act 1912, which was still enforceable when I was stationed in England in 1992. 80-year old religious-based legislation. You see, one of the many facets of the British Shops Act was disallowing large stores from carrying out business on the Lord's Day. I know this because the nation as a whole (minus presumably Tesco executives), were shocked when the chain supermarket blatantly ignored the law by opening for business on Sunday. Sure there was a fine involved, and Tesco - one of the largest retailers in that part of the world IIRC, found the profits they made more than made up for both the fine, and the legal paperwork involved. So they opened again the next Sunday, the Sunday after that, and the Sunday after that. It was "big news" when I was there, each Sunday opening increasing the incredulity of your average British citizen that such an outrageous thing was allowed to take place.

As these things happen - and moving at the speed of government - two years later (after I'd left), Parliament passed the Sunday Trading Act 1994. This allowed large retailers to partially open during the day on Sunday. As you might be able to imagine, this was a magnificent win for one group of people, and a tremendous loss for another. John Roberts, director of the Lord's Day Observance Society, says, "It all means that Sundays are losing their intended meaning, because when God created the world he set aside one day that was different. It was also the day that Jesus Christ rose from the dead."

Interestingly enough, when London hosted the Olympic Games in 2012, the Sunday Trading (London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games) Act 2012 suspended the restrictions on Sunday shopping because Olympic-level tourism always, always, always trumps Biblical Law. Honest, look it up. Its in Leviticus. The point being of course, if ethics are so easily swayed by the almighty Pound Sterling, then it looks hypocritically stupid to reinstate a religiously motivated law after temporarily suspending it for monetary reasons. I'm pretty sure that's Golden Calf-level stuff and would make Charlton Heston angry.

And speaking of Jesus Christ rising from the dead, many of the stores within the Town West Mall here in Wichita, Kansas were advertising an "EASTER WEEKEND SALE!" I assumed the "He is Risen" crowd would be vested in potlucks and pagan fertility rituals, so I double-checked the webpage (THE MALL IS OPEN TODAY FROM 12-6!) and drove straight there - Where it was closed for Easter.

When the fuck exactly were they planning on having that Easter Weekend Sale?


CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2014-04-21 05:35 (UTC) (Link)
You missed it it was Friday and Saturday!!!
ehowton at 2014-04-21 14:42 (UTC) (Link)
That makes about as much sense as Leviticus.
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2014-04-22 02:35 (UTC) (Link)
The sale was Friday and Saturday, but not Easter Sunday.

What about Sirach, I like Sirach.

*True Friendship*

Pleasant speech multiplies friends,

and gracious lips, friendly greetings.

Let those who are friendly to you be many,

but one in a thousand your confidant.

When you gain friends, gain them through testing,b

and do not be quick to trust them.

For there are friends when it suits them,

but they will not be around in time of trouble.

Another is a friend who turns into an enemy,

and tells of the quarrel to your disgrace.

Others are friends, table companions,

but they cannot be found in time of affliction.

When things go well, they are your other self,

and lord it over your servants.

If disaster comes upon you, they turn against you

and hide themselves.

Stay away from your enemies,

and be on guard with your friends.

Faithful friends are a sturdy shelter;

whoever finds one finds a treasure.

Faithful friends are beyond price,

no amount can balance their worth.

Faithful friends are life-saving medicine;

those who fear God will find them.

Those who fear the Lord enjoy stable friendship,

for as they are, so will their neighbors be.
ehowton at 2014-04-22 11:38 (UTC) (Link)
I like this guy! While at times blindingly presumptuous, he exudes wisdom. And what a nice thought!
michelle1963 at 2014-04-21 10:54 (UTC) (Link)
You know one of the things I genuinely enjoyed about "Sin City" is the lack of hypocrisy. Everybody knows "money talks." In Vegas they do not pretend otherwise as is often done most other places.

While I can't speak to the malls in Vegas, I know the casinos didn't shut down for the holiday, nor the bars. Bars are open 24/7 including holidays. My hunch says it was probably just another shopping day at the mall too.
ehowton at 2014-04-21 14:47 (UTC) (Link)
You should have heard the explanation I gave my son when they wouldn't let me check out with a 6-pack of 3.2 beer Sunday.

He was baffled why one group of people would legislate their version of morality over another group of people.
michelle1963 at 2014-04-22 02:03 (UTC) (Link)
Smart kid!
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2014-04-22 03:14 (UTC) (Link)
*The Training of Children*

Whoever loves a son will chastise him often,

that he may be his joy when he grows up.a

Whoever disciplines a son will benefit from him,

and boast of him among acquaintances.

Whoever educates a son will make his enemy jealous,

and rejoice in him among his friends.

At the father’s death, he will seem not dead,

for he leaves after him one like himself,

Whom he looked upon through life with joy,

and in death, without regret.

Against his enemies he has left an avenger,

and one to repay his friends with kindness.

Whoever spoils a son will have wounds to bandage,

and will suffer heartache at every cry.

An untamed horse turns out stubborn;

and a son left to himself grows up unruly.

Pamper a child and he will be a terror for you,

indulge him, and he will bring you grief.

Do not laugh with him lest you share sorrow with him,

and in the end you will gnash your teeth.

Do not give him his own way in his youth,

and do not ignore his follies.

Bow down his head in his youth,

beat his sides while he is still young,

Lest he become stubborn and disobey you,

and leave you disconsolate.b

Discipline your son and make heavy his yoke,

lest you be offended by his shamelessness.

~The book of Sirach
ehowton at 2014-04-22 14:11 (UTC) (Link)
While a lot of what his wisdom echos is true, he's missed out on the last 2000 years or so where critical thinking has replaced "beating his sides" as a more sustainable version of compliance.

Additionally, "chastising him often" is now linked to a whole host of psychological issues which manifest themselves in ways which decidedly don't return the traits the author implies.

This guy is great :D
CeltManX, Devlin O' Coileáin
celtmanx at 2014-04-23 04:30 (UTC) (Link)
The Book of Sirach


Edited at 2014-04-23 04:32 am (UTC)
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