Friday, November 26, 2010

Contemplations on Black Friday

Yesterday I tweeted this:

What kind of society do we live in when retail stores are open today & we can't allow people to enjoy the holiday so we can shop at 3am?

Apparently I struck a chord based on the responses on Facebook. People seem to fall into one of two categories: those who are out shopping for deals today and those who are staying as far from the stores as possible.

The reasons behind that tweet were many, so I would like to share a few of the thoughts leading to it.

Thanksgiving is a national holiday. We are supposed to give thanks for all our blessings. It is a time for family. Yet while most of the nation had the day off, there were retail stores open, trying to get a jump on Black Friday profits. I can somewhat excuse grocery and drug stores and gas stations. But Walmart and KMart and the like really had no reason to be open except plain greed. Their employees didn't get to enjoy a holiday, but you can bet the corporate offices were closed. Are we so lost in our need to own things that we can't allow people the opportunity to spend a holiday with their loved ones? Thanksgiving is not a religious holiday. Everyone in the nation can celebrate it.

It seems as soon as the turkey is eaten, minds turn to the deals many stores offer the following day. But what of the employees who have to work? I know some, and when a store is opening at 3 a.m., you can bet they had to go to bed early. Sure puts a damper on spending time with family when you plan to go to sleep as soon as dinner is over. And that is if those workers even got to spend time with family, considering their abbreviated holiday!

And about stores opening at 3 a.m., why???!? Why can't they wait until their regular shopping hours? Because they want to open before their competition to get as much money as possible. Surely the holiday would be more enjoyable for everyone if the sales started at 9 a.m. Better rested shoppers and employees might even make for a more pleasant experience.

And to top all that corporate and personal greed off, this was posted just a few days ago.

Next year, let's start a movement and commit to NOT go to any stores on Black Friday, at least not until normal business hours, even if it means missing a great deal. Because do we really need that whatever enough to sell our souls for it? Anyone want to join in a quiet protest?

1 comment:

  1. I'll join the protest! I have never gone shopping on Black Friday, nor do I ever intend to. I hate to shop with crazy people flying all about, acting as though Black Friday gives them the excuse to act like a complete ninny. Instead, I will gladly laze around in my jammies all day on Black Friday. =)

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