Black Friday Steals Thanksgiving

in Opinion by

On Thanksgiving Day, I have a feeling we’re going to do the same thing we do every year. Get together with family, eat that delicious spread of Thanksgiving dinner and carry on into the night until all go home, or pass out on the couch.
After the last few weeks of classes, a relaxing evening is in order. The last thing that appeals to me is more stress. For the folks that eat all day, and then force themselves through two miserable hours of sleep before the alarm sounds to get up and haul out into the cold, busy-body filled stores and shopping malls.
Not to sound like a broken record, but I can’t seem to understand why people pile into their cars, trucks and vans at all hours of the night to buy a television or foot massager that they simply don’t need, won’t use, or already have two of. This means of continuing the promotion of consumerism is doing more harm than good.
Think about it; some people work and work for wages that, in some cases, barely make their electric bill, and then the same people march into the night, hypnotized by the big, pretty signs that glow in the night screaming, “SALES, SALES.” They are in turn forced to buy products, gifts and cheap trinkets that serve them limited purpose.
As a college students, paying for school, including books and supplies, seems like a far more important investment to me than wasting it on an expensive computer, camera or what have you, that’s programmed with a planned-obsolescence. In no way can I rationalize compromising my money that’s for school, or food for that matter, to go out and buy stuff that I’m told I need, because it’s the ‘best’ and it will make me into something I lack.
Sure, buying an oversized television or computer for hundreds of dollars less than normally priced could be seen as a steal, but at what cost do we buy into these material products that are meant to glorify our lives in a superficial and surreal way?
In some cases, materials used in various technologies can be hazardous to people, like cadmium, and the production and distribution play a large role in the furthering degradation of our environment.
With each year growing more and more around the idea that family time branches into the night and around the shopping malls, I can’t help but ask how did it get to be this way? Why are people so amped to wait outside of a box store’s door in temperatures well below zero to wait shivering for something they simply don’t need?
Not only does it depreciate the togetherness and gathering of family—since you’re actually surrounding yourself and competing with strangers to get the best deals—but it’s turning a holiday that is about giving thanks and being appreciative for what you have into pro-consumerism, take-all, leave-none sort of nightmare.
So, to those that are heading out into the cold night after Thanksgiving Day, I tip my hat to you and turn the other way.