Opinion: Black Friday Permeates Thanksgiving

By Abbey Knupp

Prepare to eat your Thanksgiving dinner from your finest tupperware containers if you want to catch some of the hot sales this holiday season. If you don’t currently own some nice tupperware containers, you could always pick up the $18 set of pyrex containers that are a part of Macy’s sale. However, if you desire such an item, you better be prepared to give up the better part of your holiday dinner, because Macy’s opens its doors at 8 pm on Thanksgiving, and those containers are going to fly off the shelves. Most stores have moved up the start of their sales, forgoing the typical 10-12 pm start time for something much earlier: 5 pm.

When stores began releasing their sale ads, sending shameless emails and plastering the deals all around their stores, mixed feelings emerged from the general public. Some rejoiced that they could get their shopping done at a reasonable hour, while others erupted with rage, arguing that the earlier sales were disrupting the sanctity of the holiday and tearing people away from their families, both with the allure of low prices and with the store’s need for employees.

Black Friday has expanded from a single day of intense sales to a full weekend of deals. Some stores stagger their doorbusters, so that large items go on sale at different times all weekend, while others release most of their inventory at once. The sale festivities cease after Cyber Monday, the internet equivalent of Black Friday, which follows the Monday directly after Friday’s enormous sales. So, why are sales starting sooner? Doesn’t it seem a little excessive, considering some sales already last all weekend?

“No,” responds big business. Due to low sales predictions and a small amount of shopping days between Black Friday and Christmas, stores hope to capitalize on all of the selling time that they can to move merchandise. But, what does this mean for the employees who work through their dinners or the sale-seeking shopper who is forced to choose between sales and family? Does this ever-present consumeristic attitude desecrate the holiday?

When standing in the cold, winter wind, waiting on the back side of a building towards the end of a line of hundreds of people, all filled with the hope of bagging some good deals, where is the giving of thanks? It seems that people are too busy thanking the companies for the good deals to give appreciation for the things and people already in their lives. With this year’s abundance of sales, people are going to have a hard time trying to balance the two.

Personally, I can’t wait to eat my dinner out of a plastic container as I stand in line at Best Buy with my family, waiting for the doors to open. After all, what is better than family bonding over the forceful search for the last Macbook Pro and the long, tedious wait to check out? Except, maybe, our lunch the following day, where we all make food together, warm ourselves around a fire, and recount our craziest Black Friday experiences. Our belated Thanksgiving dinner is always something I look forward too, and it is the best way, my family has found, to balance our love of sales with our love for each other.

You can’t imagine the type of furor that is created when a store dangles savings in front of an eager crowd unless you have experienced it for yourself. To find store ads, simply go that that store’s website. The Black Friday ads are impossible to miss.


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