Black Friday is no longer Black Friday. Gone are the early hours of the morning, the crowded parking lots, the long lines, the excitement bristling in the air as the rush for an item begins. Gone is the camaraderie of new friends as we search for items together. Gone is the fun of traveling from store to store. Gone is the exhaustion of returning home and crashing back into bed for a few more hours.
Instead, the stores are now open on Thanksgiving. Early in the evening rather than late at night. Will we one day say goodbye to this holiday and embrace a crazy shopping day that has replaced Black Friday?
I refuse to go shopping on Thanksgiving. I do not want this day of gratitude to the Lord and a gathering of families to be replaced with a materialistic day. Thanksgiving is supposed to be a family day, a day when stores are closed and people can enjoy being with their families. For the past few years, this day has changed into an early Black Friday.
I miss Black Friday. Yes, this is a materialistic day, but I did not go out to grab the biggest deal. I went out mainly to enjoy the craziness. And to finish my Christmas shopping, which was usually something within my budget and not at all expensive. I miss waking up at 3 in the morning and driving at night to find the parking lot almost full of cars that have grown cold. While in line, someone would strike up a conversation with me, and we would admit how crazy it was to get up so early in the morning for something that is not going to last. I miss the camaraderie as people wander through the stores. Several times, I have pointed them in the right direction. Several times, I have been pointed in the right direction. The help did not come from the already frazzled store workers, but from other shoppers.
Two years ago, I went out on Black Friday, like usual. Rather than the crowds and the fun, I was the only one in the store. The sales had ended, for the store had opened on Thanksgiving. This year, I am sleeping in. This year, I am going to enjoy a day off work and be grateful for what I have.
Will you be like me and refuse to go shopping on Thanksgiving? Let's bring back the joy and fun of Black Friday, rather than shorten our precious family time. Let's give the retail workers a day where they themselves are able to enjoy a holiday with their families. Not only are we sacrificing our families for the sake of a sale, but we are also forcing the retail workers to sacrifice themselves. Is this fair to the workers? Should we be so greedy that we forget what is truly important, our families?
Let's boycott Thanksgiving shopping.