HomeOpinionBlack Friday: Retail’s most horrifying day looms again

Black Friday: Retail’s most horrifying day looms again


Let’s be honest. When November rolls in and spooky season wraps up, it becomes time for everyone to put on their “Christmas cheer” faces. Gifts are bought, market sales increase, and Americans flock to wherever they can buy loved ones holiday gifts. However, this holiday cheer isn’t always positive, as November, with the many festivities and pumpkin pies that it brings, also possesses one of retail’s most terrifying days: Black Friday.

Black Friday is when American consumers flock to their closest retail stores for the “best” deals of the year. Scenes of Best Buy, Target, Walmart and other industry titans are settings of chaos and disgust, lately before Black Friday even begins.

But let’s put aside, for hypothetical purposes, the tents you’ll pitch outside of Best Buy on Thanksgiving night. Let’s forget about the one in three Americans that will shop on the 22nd of the month. Let’s forget that it takes 25 percent of Americans three months to pay off holiday debts, according to a 2016 survey by TD Bank. Is it really worth it to leave home on Thanksgiving to wait in six-hour lines so you can get your TV for 100 smackaroos? Are American consumers really getting the bang for their buck they think that they’re receiving?

The answer to both questions is simple: no.

Black Friday nowadays can be seen as one of the largest examples of consumerism in the world, a capitalist Mardi Gras that now extends for days in which Americans are encouraged to believe in the-more-the-merrier mindset. According to new research from the Consumer Electronics Association, that’s a big deal! Businesses overstock the shelves with items that will last until April, sell them by the masses on a set day and continue to drop the price on the respective item until the next year. Your $100 flat-screen may go for less in March of the next year.

Not only this, but consumers are taught that there are essential products on the market. Shirts, perfumes, phones and the like are advertised as essential products for everyone, leaving us wondering whether an impulsive purchase is really going to provide a change in our lives. Just a heads up, your essential products really aren’t essential. According to analysis by NerdWallet, even 93 percent of the companies that sell these essential items reuse their ads every single year.

My point here is simple: Participating in Black Friday, the capitalist consumer holiday, is ignorant, unnecessary and, quite simply, stupid. In fact, Black Friday is used by retail companies to gain the most unneeded profit possible. The 11 billion dollars made per year, according to analysis from Market Watch, on one particular day may not be spent so well. American consumerism has gotten out of hand, to the point where we’re willing to leave our household’s Thanksgiving dinner for a good deal. Black Friday is the antithesis of Thanksgiving, and participating in it is akin to pissing on the best elements of human nature.

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