Black Friday madness


Customers swarm around Wal-Mart for Black Friday sale items.

It’s sad that people feel the need go out to shop after being thankful for what they already have. With Black Friday being the No. 1 shopping day of the year, it’s hard to believe that it follows Thanksgiving. And this year, the majority of the stores opened their doors for sales beginning Thanksgiving night.

Black Friday is always crazy. Anywhere shoppers go they expect ridiculously lengthy lines. This year, Black Friday was a bit different. Instead of anticipating midnight on Friday, people stood in line on Thanksgiving Day to charge into stores and shop as early as 6 p.m.

We have become a consumer-focused society that we’ve lost focus of what “the holidays” are all about. Now that Black Friday has moved into Thanksgiving, it’s almost as if it has become the main focus of the Thanksgiving weekend and not Thanksgiving Day itself. It’s so disturbing to think that for some people, instead of gathering with loved ones to eat a bunch of turkey, they needed head off to work, while others were impatiently standing in lines, anticipating stores’ openings. It’s ridiculous how many stores opened their doors on Thanksgiving night. Wal-Mart was for sure one of them.

According to the LA Times, The National Retail Federation said foot traffic on Thanksgiving was up 27 percent from last year. Although Black Friday was still the main focus day, opening stores on Thanksgiving Day itself gave retailers an advantage over their competitors. It allowed stores to open earlier, offering sale items over a longer period of time.

Not only is it sad but quite disturbing that people behave this way. This behavior shows how desperate people are. To think that all this attention is drawn to one day, just to shop for items at an unreasonable hour and save give or take $50 off the regular price. It’s not really worth the time and effort.

On Black Friday in past years, people have fought one another for toys and goods that are on sale. In previous years, Kauai Wal-Mart experienced a fight over bags of rice on sale. On Kauai this year, a shopper was in line waiting to pay for her items when another shopper came up behind her and ripped the toy from her arms, thus scratching her and causing a fight in the middle of the store where her family needed to get involved.

Unless you are going shopping for the specific sale items, it is pointless to try and shop on Black Friday. Although I do understand to some it may seem cheaper, it makes no sense to trample over people to buy someone a gift that’s only going to sit around until Christmas. The majority of the goods that go on sale for Black Friday are items like toys, electronics, household appliances, clothes and more.

Maybe next year retailers will think of a more efficient way to shop for sales. Hopefully stores put the focus back on Black Friday itself and let Thanksgiving be about fellowship with family and friends. Although shopping is fun, it’s not when people are being trampled over and scratched up for items that you could get for $20 more on any given day.