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I try not to hammer controversial subjects too often, but this week I felt led to probe the subject of Black Friday. I am writing this post on Black Friday after sleeping in until 8:45 AM (after an exhaustingly fun day with family on Thanksgiving), going to work at my horse job for a few hours in the morning, taking a nice ride with my dad and sisters when I got home, and doing some blogwork. It’s been kind of a normal-slash-vacation day. No, I didn’t go shopping. Here’s why:
Un: I wanted to sleep.
Deux: It is a madhouse out there.
Trois: I don’t need more stuff. Not that badly at least.
Quatre: I actually do have a moral objection to Black Friday.
That’s probably the point you’re most interested in. You are now either nodding your head, completely agreeing with me, or your hackles are raised and you are taking offense as I type. Don’t be offended – it isn’t becoming. There could also be a few levelheaded souls out there who are neither offended or agreeing but are waiting patiently for me to explain myself and convince you. I love you.
I have a moral objection to Black Friday because (in general) it is a day dedicated to the instantly-gratifying selfish accumulation of unneeded stuff. This does not apply to everyone. There are some people out there who use the deals of the day to buy things that they legitimately need at a much better price than they could usually get those items for. That’s actually a pretty logical idea (aside from the fact that you are still putting your person and your vehicle into an environment of heightened danger and still supporting the general day of selfish revelry in a way).
Help me understand this. We have a day dedicated to giving thanks for all the blessings we’ve been given (which is too often spent in self-indulgence and gluttony, but that’s a subject for another time), then we follow it with a day dedicated to accumulating more stuff! HOW DOES THAT EVEN MAKE SENSE? We live in a messed up world.
All I’m trying to say is that it seems rather hypocritical to observe a day of thanksgiving, then follow that with a selfish spending spree. Whether you actually have a good reason to be out shopping on Black Friday or not, think about the message you’re sending to the world by participating in the madness. Even if it’s not wrong to shop on Black Friday (especially at a common-sense hour for a common-sense reason), what kind of message could you send by making the choice to stay at home? Even if your peers never see, think about the message you could send your children by making a conscious choice not to participate in the world’s game. And even if you don’t have children, think about the message you could send yourself. That message just might be the most important.