Black Friday, a rant


As a seasoned Black Friday shopper, I need to get something off my chest.

I need to warn you, there will be a lot of caps lock in this post.

Black Friday is FRIDAY. The day AFTER Thanksgiving.

It is not 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving, K-Mart.
It is not 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving, Walmart, and Best Buy.
Nor is it 8 p.m. Kohl's, Target, Sears and Macy's.
And Toys R Us, it is SURELY not 5 p.m.

Do you know why NONE of these are acceptable hours for the sales to begin?
1. They are not on Friday, Black Friday, the day that the great sales are supposed to start.
2. You need to arrive at least an hour before the start of the sales to stand in line. Which means as early as 5 am on Thankgiving day people will be camped out in front of Thanksgiving. Oh who am I kidding, they'll be there earlier than that.
3. This means employees need to come to work HOURS BEFORE THE SALES START to prepare for the madness that will ensue.

Please, tell me what are you doing at 5 am on Thanksgiving day? Or 2 pm? 5 pm? In the early hours of the morning I would expect you are putting the turkey in the oven, packing up the kids to head over to a family members house a few hours drive away or sleeping. At 2 pm, you're either gorging on delicious appetizers or you've sat down in front of a perfectly cooked turkey, a tall pile of mashed potatoes with a swimming pool of gravy on top, a mound of stuffing and your assorted vegetables. At 5 I expect you are either in a tryptophan induced coma from all of the turkey you consumed, or you're just sitting down to your above described meal.

Now please tell me how in the world is it fair for YOU to sit there with your friends, your family, your pets or whomever is spending this holiday with you, enjoying food and quality time while these people are stocking shelves, unloading pallets and preparing for the general mayhem that you are going to cause them? It's unacceptable.

This society we live in, driven by a "need it now" mentality and practically brainwashed by these retailers to believe these deals are too good to pass up, is just sad. Disheartening. Pathetic. It's a blow to humanity. We essentially are segregating into those "privileged" enough not to work retail and thus "entitled" to shop and those not "lucky" enough to have non-retail positions. You do know these employees really don't have a choice right?

While these big retailers might make it seem like all these employees just volunteered up their holidays with their families to spend it serving you, that's really not the case. In many retailers, working on Black Friday is MANDATORY.


And hey, if you live in an at-will state, you could refuse to work and they could fire you for it. I do realize that there are employees who don't mind working the holiday. Those who can't get home to family, those desperate for those overtime hours, those who don't celebrate the holiday. But these people aren't enough.

At what point did saving a dollar become more important than spending time with family? At what point did we decided that these retailers could take that away from us? Why are we allowing this to continue?

So I suggest you take a really long hard look at your Black Friday shopping list. Do you NEED those items? Are they worth the employees dinner that you're making them sacrifice? Will that dress never go on sale again? That TV? Is your world really going to end without the Twilight DVD for $1.96?

The answer is No.

Fight back against these retailers forcing employees to work on Thanksgiving. Don't go out Thursday night.

If you are a true shopaholic and the thought of passing up deals makes you physically panicky, let me introduce you to this little thing called The Internet. Many of these same stores have just as many good deals all online. Where no employees to assist you are necessary. Oh, and if you're really that addicted, you are surely good enough to find a similar deal offered during the holiday season that doesn't involve going out on Thanksgiving day.

Return Black Friday to what it once was - Shopping on the Friday after Thanksgiving.  

1 comment:

  1. Agree and well said. I will not be shopping Thur. or Friday.


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