Black Friday takes over Thanksgiving

Jake Tapley

It seems that in recent years, Black Friday has been invading Thanksgiving Thursday.

Originally, I didn’t think the idea was harmful. There were some places opening at midnight, and I thought that could probably be fun for some people.

I actually tried to do Black Friday a couple of years ago and was immediately discouraged by the long lines that wrapped around Target. I turned around and went home. I guess it isn’t for me.

However, the corporate machine has gotten a bit out of control in recent years, bumping the consumer holiday back into, well, the food consumer holiday.

This year, Walmart is opening its doors at 6 p.m. That’s kind of when people eat.

It’s not even that I love Thanksgiving, because honestly, I don’t care all that much.

I just know that other people do, and I wish businesses would start valuing that or at least taking it into consideration.

The world shouldn’t revolve around maximizing profits.

On the same token, though, we’re the ones feeding the machine.

The corporations depend on us. The only way businesses can afford to open their doors so early is because they know that “if you build it, they will come” – “they” being the customers, of course.

Let’s not forget our role in the equation. If we didn’t emphasize the value of getting deals on big ticket items that, in the scheme of things, don’t really matter, we might not even be in this situation.

I will say this about Thanksgiving: at least it’s based in humanity and in personal interaction, even if that interaction is usually awkward or terrible or detrimental to the well-being of those involved.

Black Friday certainly isn’t about either of these things. Sure, there are some isolated conversations that take place in the line, but that isn’t why people are there.

People are there for the credit-card interaction.

So I would just ask that we all think about what’s really important as we get close to the holiday shopping season. Is getting a great deal really worth the trouble of going out in the middle of the day, waiting in line and missing out on Turkey Day? Is a cheap flat screen TV the legacy you have to offer?

You know…there’s always Cyber Monday.