Black Thursday: Consumerism Goes Too Far

I get it. Really, I do. Black Friday is a time for companies to put on crazy sales and get out of whatever financial deficit they have before the new year. I also understand that there are professional Black Friday shoppers who save five million dollars doing all their Christmas shopping this one day. But this year, Black Friday has gone too far.

The only Black Friday I actively participated in was Circuit City about seven years ago. They opened at 5am and my Dad and I got their around 4am. There were already over 400 people in line ahead of us (I know because they counted us as we entered the store and I was 450-something).

As far as I could remember, Black Friday sales were always just really early on Friday. Last year I found it interesting that places like Walmart and Kohls were holding midnight sales. I figured this made sense, more people in your store for more hours equals more sales. And technically it was still "Friday" when the sale started, so I thought it was permissible. But this year is different. Some stores now have sales starting at 8pm Thanksgiving Day! 

We now have Black Thursday.

I'm sure this makes sense for stores, since people will line up even earlier this year. Maybe 5pm, 6pm? But commercialism has now effectively made Thanksgiving a 20 hour day; less if you line up before hand.

So what's next? Will 2013 bring sales starting at 5pm Thanksgiving Day? Will people have to re-arrange their family get-together to accommodate a sale? It doesn't seem worth it to me. And it seems like the idea of family is getting pushed to the wayside.

Don't let a sale or gift take precedence over your family. And don't plan Thanksgiving dinner around the opening of a store. This is a holiday to laugh, fellowship and escape the chaotic day-to-day life. 

As for me, I will continue my usual Black Friday tradition. Sleep in, go out around 2pm in the afternoon, and observe the signs of mayhem from the morning at Best Buy, Target and Walmart. I'm more of a Cyber Monday guy anyway.