Another Thanksgiving is almost here. As has been the norm for at least the past decade, and probably longer, the debate has turned up in volume whether or not retailers should be open on that day. Some will be excited at the notion of hitting those Holiday sales, others will be angry at the sacrosanct nature of the day being violated. For the next few weeks we will be treated to endless commercials juxtaposed against news items, blog posts, and editorials asking “have we gone too far?”
Our social media will be overwhelmed by our friends railing against the travesty of people having to work on an important family Holiday. We will wring our hands. We will point fingers. We will pine for a simpler time when businesses had ethics (hurting myself holding in the laugh here) and would never consider being open on such a sacred day. After they have enjoyed their turkey, cranberry sauce , and stuffing, after they have watched their football (because the families of people working in stadiums do not matter) they will rest their little heads and head out for their Black Friday sales.
Seriously folks, how do you think we got here? Do you think, in all your self-righteous fury your hands are clean? Decades of consumerism, of which you have been a willing participant have brought us here. Decades of taking a holiday about hope in the midst of darkness and making it about filling our material needs have brought us here. Your entire life spending at least a month hoping to give or receive that perfect Christmas gift, have brought us here.
We have made a mockery of these days, not the businesses who are only filling a need. Yes, they have conditioned us over the years. I am not letting them completely off the hook, but I am not letting you, any of you, off the hook at all. We have spent our lives feeding at a the trough of our society’s waste and greed. We have turned ourselves into consumption machines and at the end of the year we kick it into high gear. We grasp and feed for a month and then wonder why oh why do the sultans of sales pander to our endless hunger.
You want to end this? You really want to reclaim the holidays? Then stop feeding the beast. Rather than making sure you have a Christmas tree hidden behind a mountain of colorful boxes, buy one or two meaningful gifts for those closest to you. Better yet, forgo gift giving for friends and relations and give to a cause or charity important to you. Defang that monster you complain about rather than sharpening its teeth and appetite. That, or stop complaining, accept that you have created it, and are just as much at fault as the people camping out on Thanksgiving morning outside of Wal-Mart. We get the holiday we pay for, so enjoy it or pay for something else.
- Put the Christmas Decorations Down and Nobody Gets Hurt (thewidowsmiteyblog.wordpress.com)
- Skipping the Gifts: A Different Approach to the Holiday Shopping Season (dailyfinance.com)
- Will You Be Busting Down the Door For Black Friday Sales On Thursday? (viewpoints.com)
- Black Friday Comes on Thursday This Year (hispanicbusiness.com)