Thanksgiving is being ousted by Black Friday

5 years ago Triangle 0

The Christmas shopping season is creeping earlier and earlier each year, causing holiday celebrations with family to become more and more rare. Black Friday has become the focus of Thanksgiving, instead of gratitude.

In a society gone crazy over immediate gratification, we will do whatever we can to be on top of the game, one step ahead of the rest. Black Friday offers one of the most comprehensive examples of this.

But it is also a crude example of deserting our families, abandoning our grateful hearts and chasing after the greatest discount, all after gathering for a holiday that celebrates our many blessings. It has risen in such popularity that family and turkey and mashed potatoes are becoming afterthoughts.

But it doesn’t even stop at the one day; Black Thursday is quickly replacing Thanksgiving, overtaking our holiday and robbing us of time with our families. Stores like Macy’s and J. C. Penney that opened at an unprecedented midnight in 2012, bumped it to 8 p.m. last year. This year, they and others are not even waiting until the turkey is out of the way: Best Buy and J. C. Penney open at 5 p.m. on Thanksgiving, Macy’s, Wal-Mart and Target are waiting a whole hour, until 6 p.m..

As if Black Thursday were not enough, it’s going more along the lines of Black November. Stores have been pushing their Black Friday ads since the beginning of the month, and some stores begin Black Friday online deals as far back as the Sunday and Monday before Thanksgiving. There is also a Black Friday Ads app, along with over a dozen more touting similar “benefits.” Black Friday.com has been distributing advertisement leaks since early October.

It’s not bad enough that we are choosing to leave our own families on Thanksgiving, but the stores we shop at need employees on the clock to serve customers. So, while we’re shopping on Thanksgiving, someone else is working, and has been for hours. Our consumerism does not only steal valuable time from our families, but also from everyone roped into working that holiday.

Okay, so not everybody is going to skip out on family altogether. Still, the growing trend is to gather around piles of Black Friday ads and online resources, fully immersed in our own desires and checklists, rather than to gather around the dinner table, immersed in conversation about things that matter. It’s a growing trend on a day-to-day basis, so we don’t know any better on Thanksgiving. We have weeknight dinner around the TV, why should Thanksgiving be any different?

It should be different because we are setting the example for future generations, because we should take advantage of the rare opportunity to be with our family, really be with them — mentally, physically, emotionally, thankfully. We implore you to do that this year: reject the spirits of greed and consumerism. Quit doing things for self and, instead, do something for your family. Put possessions back in their place and make people a priority.