Dying to get a good deal

Black Friday marks the worst holiday of the season



The infographic shows surprising facts about Black Friday that demonstrate the insane amount of money spent during this day. Money spent on items such as flat-screen TVs and room decor could instead be used to feed all the hungry children in the world for 2 years. The sum of the money is so high that it’s larger than the GDP of 117 countries in the world. Money that could be used to clear up debt creates an even bigger problem of holiday debt.

Anna Blumenthal, Staff Reporter

Most families imagine the holidays as a time spent with loved ones, appreciating everything they have. However, there is one holiday that lurks in the shadows, poking out its ugly head once a year. “Black Friday” has become an absolute nightmare of a holiday for employees and consumers alike. The yearly tradition brings about overspending and violence.

The shopping phenomenon promises amazing deals to consumers just before the holiday season starts. In reality, most “deals” are really a scam from companies trying to make people think they are getting the best prices available. Stores use tactics such as using the same deals from the previous year, raising prices a week before dropping them and giving the best deals to outdated products that would’ve been put on sale anyway. A study conducted by Nerdwallet found that around 93% of retailers are repeating products and prices from the year before. Therefore, it is not accurate to advertise that shoppers are getting the “best deals ever” on Black Friday. 

Not only are the prices of the products a total lie, but the quality of the items is also not up to par. Forbes found that most stores “derivative models” of popular items such as TVs. Shoppers are mainly looking for name-brands, sizes and deals, so they don’t notice that the TV itself is of a lower quality. The holiday dedicated to shopaholics is all fun and games until the products purchased don’t work a month later.

Another tragic component to the event is the amount of violence that accompanies it. People may hear stories about consumers battling over future gifts on Black Friday and find them humorous, but the fact that people are literally fighting over low prices is absurd. For example, several individuals were injured in Atlanta in 2010 while fighting over $1.28 towels at a WalMart. Towels can be expensive, but getting them for cheap is definitely not worth a black eye. There are even times when the chaos gets so extreme that people end up dying in the mobs. Take for example the 2008 Black Friday in which two WalMart workers were trampled to death from crowds that broke down the doors. If innocent people are dying or getting injured from what’s considered a holiday, then that holiday should stop getting celebrated altogether.

Also, Black Friday itself seems like a complete mockery to Thanksgiving. On the first day, people get together with their families and talk about everything in life that they are appreciative of. Then, once midnight hits, people give in to their greediness and go buy their wants. People can’t show that they are truly thankful for what they have when a day later they go out and buy a heaping pile of things they don’t need. Furthermore, the time dedicated to being grateful is being cut into by more time for spending. It proves to businesses that people would rather hit the shops as soon as they open instead of being with family.

This upcoming Black Friday, I urge everyone to skip the stores. Everyone would be so much better off with another day dedicated to being appreciative of the privilege they have rather than spending the day wanting more. USA Today describes it as temptation and associated pressure that compels consumers to spend more. By going Black Friday shopping, it sends a message to companies that people will support scams and violence in order to get “great holiday deals.” With enough people staying out of the mobs, this vicious holiday could finally be put to rest.