Skip to comments.What Happened to Liberal Outrage Over Black Friday?
Posted on 11/29/2019 4:56:47 AM PST by Kaslin
Ill never forget the Friday after Thanksgiving, 2011. I was vaguely aware of the pseudo-holiday known as Black Friday, but I had seldom participated. On that day, however, I had to go to a local big-box store to get diapers and baby wipes for my then four-week-old daughter, Catherine. As the sun sank in the dreary November sky over Toledo, Ohio, I noticed traffic in this small Midwestern city had slowed to a crawl more than a mile from the mall.
By the time I finally made it inside the store, it was a madhouse. The customers werent gleeful, joyfully snatching up deeply discounted flat-screens and made-in-China Disney figurines. Instead, there was an air of desperation. The crowd looked grim, as if they knew today was their only chance to score a decent deal on a Christmas gift for their kids. And who could blame them? This was just three years after the economic meltdown of 2008, and plenty of middle-class, hardworking people were still feeling the aftershocks. The economy was still in ruins, and just months before, the Occupy Wall Street movement had risen from the ashes. It was a dark, desperate year for many of us, I thought, as I fought my way to the checkout line, using my cart as a shield. I couldnt wait to get out of that store.
Looking back on that Black Friday now, I can only shrug and say: at least it was Friday.
Thanks to big corporations like Target, who spend the rest of the year carefully cultivating a progressive image, Black Friday now begins on Thursday. Just a few years ago, nearly every business in America closed up shop on Thanksgiving, and duking it out with other deal-seekers over cheap electronics and smartphones was unthinkable. Thanksgiving was respected as a national day off, a day to spend at home with family and friends. No more. Target announced a few weeks ago it would open earlier than ever on Thanksgiving 2019, at 5 PMmeaning thousands of minimum-wage employees will have to skip Thanksgiving dinner to control the crowds at a big box store.
What happened to liberal outrage over Black Friday? In the early 2010s, especially during the heyday of anti-corporate-greed movements like Occupy Wall Street, many rightly denounced this fake holiday as predatory. During the worst economic downturn in a generation, giant corporations lured in customers with deceptive advertising, ginning up a madhouse atmosphere in which people were injured and killed over cheap goods. A grim Web site called BlackFridayDeathCount.com started tracking the number of deaths linked to Black Friday mayhemincluding tramplings, beatings, and shootings. In 2011the year I first noticed Black Friday taking a decidedly darker turnthe liberal-leaning Washington Post ran an article titled, Occupy Wall Street? Or Occupy Black Friday?
We dont see much of those articles anymore. Are we simply tired of being outraged? Or have corporations like Target purchased indulgences from the church of cultural liberalism, as FOX News host Tucker Carlson describes it?
Corporations with questionable morals when it comes to their treatment of workers, like Apple and Target, have embraced the trendier elements of the LGBTQ rights movement for cover. In the spring of 2016, Target rolled out its transgender bathroom policy to much fanfare. The company said that, in the name of inclusivity, any patron could use any bathroom that fit their gender identity. The company also announced it would eliminate gendered toy sections. (Well, sort of: at my local Target, all the dolls and dresses are still in the same aisle, while all the G.I. Joes are in another. They simply removed the explicit signage saying Girls and Boys. What do they wanta Nobel Peace Prize?)
Making a few cosmetic changes to your store layout and declaring your bathrooms gender neutral is easy. Changing your labor practices to stay true to your progressive valuessuch as walking away from millions in extra profits in order to let your minimum-wage employees spend Thanksgiving at home with familyis hard. Given the choice between liberal ideals about corporate greed and valuing the little guyespecially low-wage workersand profit, progressive corporations like Target choose profit every time.
And low-wage workers arent the only people who suffer for our Black Friday excesses. According to experts at nonprofit groups like the Sierra Club, Black Friday also greatly contributes to what liberals say is the most pressing issue of our lifetime: climate change and environmental pollution. This is the biggest day of the year for people to purchase massive amounts of plastic, in forms ranging from excessive packaging to cheap toysthe vast majority of which ends up in the trash within months. Cyber Monday isn't off the hook, either. Cyber Monday, or Black Friday for Amazon aficionados, is a big holiday for a lot of self-styled liberal sophisticates, who would do anything to avoid going to their local Wal-Mart to buy toilet paper and stand in a check-out line with the people they sneer at on Twitter. These so-called progressives often pride themselves on ordering everything on Amazoneven basic necessities like paper towels and cleaning supplies. All that shipping packaging creates an enormous amount of waste. And much of it is non-biodegradable plastic that goes straight into the trash.
How much greed, excess, and environmental destruction are enough to make liberals say, No more? How hard is it for Target to say, Sorry, but we cant participate in Black Friday. It promotes materialism and waste, and wed rather give our workers the day off to enjoy spending time with their loved ones?
Apparently, its very hard. For the biggest companies in America, profits continue to trump people every timeand Black Friday madness keeps commencing earlier, now before the Thanksgiving turkey even lands on most American dinner tables.
But heyat least men can use the womens bathroom.
It is written as if we the people have no choice but to rush out on Thanksgiving to buy “stuff” and because of this our families are suffering. All B.S.
I personally and others I know would never subject ourselves to the mania of a crowded to the rafter store loaded with rude fools who stink of desperation.
I am not alone in feeling this way. But there are many who actually enjoy the madness and the satisfaction of scoring a great deal on something or other. They should not be criticized.
Personally with the exception of food I buy 95% of everything else on line with delivery the next day, no shipping and only tax added. It comes right to my door, no hassle, no traffic and I save considerably on the great majority of items. The rest I can get when I do go shopping for food.
Not to worry.
They will circle back to it.
Always on board for a little Target bashing but the minimum wage bit is not true if referring to the federal minimum wage. Target starts at $13/hr and is due to bump up to 15.
The author also presented herself as having no choice but to visit a "big box store" to get diapers and wipes. Her nearest grocery store or dollar store carries those items.
Me personally, you won’t find me anywhere near a store on Black Friday.
There are none of those hassles when you shop on ‘Black Friday’ on-line.
White Liberal ‘Elites’ caused the economic meltdown then mocked families trying to give their kids a nice Christmas. One more reason to condemn white liberal ‘elites’...
Or a 7-11. I’m calling BS on this piece.
The local Walmart has a barrier up this year, can’t have your customers trampled getting to your CHEAP CHINESE MADE GARBAGE. I stayed home, no 71 yr old, even armed has no business on the streets and in the way of the Stampeded.
Not ‘Free Stuff,’ But Public Goods: Ocasio-Cortez Denounces Neoliberal Talking Points on Publicly-Funded Education and Housing
AOC IS A COMMUNIST POS. ONLY CONGRESS NEEDS MORE, NOT YOU. LETS KILL SOME MORE BABIES AND CHRONICALLY ILL TO MAKE ROOM FROM HEALTHIER ILLEGALS.
The wording of this is suspect.
It was a quick and easy topic to meet her contract’s requirement for a column today. You don’t lose readers by going on about Black Friday: everyone wants to share a story or two.
My 19-year-old daughter got off work at Panera at 6:00 a.m. (she’s a baker), came home and had breakfast, and then took off to shop before she goes to bed for the day. Our local Walmart doesn’t get especially busy on Black Friday. There is about the same number of people, only more of them are buying large home electronics items than usual.
I’ll bet most people who use “trump” as a verb don’t know its context.
I do shop on line, in fact over 90% of all I buy is on line.
I’m heading out to get cheese. Mimolette Isigny. It’s nutty and so am I. And a bottle of wine for tonight. One simply muuust hahve whuinnne with one’s chuueese.
I went to Home Depot this morning to get my son a cordless drill. (gotta love it when millennial age kids want tools)
The first person I saw was a middle aged black woman who was selling HVAC cleaning services. She commented on my Trump hat and how much she loves the President.
Later on as I passed by her, we say a guy wearing a MAGA hat.
He and I started insulting each other for our hat choices and having some fun.
I’m in a reddish area of a deep blue state.
I hate going shopping at a mall. So exhausting. You couldn’t pay me enough to be there today. But I also am not into stuff. I can’t stand living burdened by all that garbage. I like ebay and thrift stores. The Dollar Store. I am not into keeping up with the Joneses. I have no debt.
It would be great entertainment to watch the results of ANTIFA harassing Black Friday shoppers lined up to ready to storm the gates of a walmart.
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