Corporate America continues its holiday stranglehold

Edwin J. Viera, Columnist

The holiday of Thanksgiving has come and gone and people are starting to get into the swing of December and, of course, Christmas shopping. The fantastic “toyage” has come back and people are going to get crazy. Some of the real craziness is the fact that Black Friday isn’t even one day anymore. It’s actually a two to three-day event.

First comes White Wednesday, for the small sales that people find, and it’s not as crazy as Black Friday. Next comes Gray Thursday where the hype starts to increase because the sales start to go into effect more and more. Finally, this event finishes with the ever faithful Black Friday, where everyone goes insane for sales they’ll never see until Black Friday comes around again.

Actually that last sentence isn’t that true. Most sales that people find on Black Friday can be found other times of the year, and they aren’t even that good.

So what’s the appeal of it all?

With stores opening earlier and earlier on Thanksgiving, is Black Friday slowly taking over? Even worse will Thanksgiving cease to exist all together and will become Brown/Gray Thursday? I couldn’t help but wonder.

Has the corporate holiday of Black Friday robbed the “thanks,” out of Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving is a holiday celebrated with large amounts of food and having family members at your house that you may or may not particularly care for, but you just put up with. We celebrate how we are thankful for everything that we have, and who we surround ourselves with every day. Then we eat way too much food, unbutton our pants, and sit around on the couches talking about life.

Last year was the first time that the stores were open on Thanksgiving Day, but rather than open at 6pm, they were opening their doors at 6am on Thanksgiving. While there were still the occasional fights, riots and insanity, Black Friday was just so early that no one really bothered to go in the morning. So began the hostile takeover of Black Friday.

According to Time magazine, people spent over 10.4 billion dollars on Black Friday, but here’s the shocking twist: that’s down from 2014, which raked in 11.6 billion dollars. Thanksgiving day sales declined from just over 2 Billion dollars in 2014 to 1.8 billion dollars.

Although, the entire holiday wasn’t a bust for business.

Online shopping jumped 14 percent from last year to 4.45 Billion dollars, and those numbers are expected to increase on Cyber Monday. Analysts are expecting projecting a 70.1 billion dollar increase in overall sales.

Maybe the appeal of this corporate holiday isn’t entirely lost, but what’s all the fighting about? Last year in Puerto Rico there was mass chaos at the opening of Wal-Mart. This year people in Chicago used it as a place to riot over the death of yet another unarmed black teenager being shot by a police officer.

We sit down for a tryptophan-loaded meal, and then three hours later people adopt the ultimate savagery tactics to get the next, best product. It’s a sad fact, but even worse it’s that it is a true one. If this is the case, then what are we looking for on Black Friday?

Many people are looking for gifts for Christmas, well that’s the guise anyway. People actually wind up buy a lot of the stuff for themselves, but it’s not exactly a definite purchase. It can go two different ways.

One type of Black Friday purchase is the necessity purchase, which is usually something that you needed. The other type of purchase is the pleasure purchase, which is usually for pleasure or just an impulse purchase. So we have an ungrateful streak within us, but does that make us bad people? Well, yes.

Black Friday, while it does serve a purpose for people, has become similar to a WWE fight with legendary wrestler, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. It started out as a way for stores to get rid of inventory, a way to stay in the black, and a way for people to get amazing sales.

Thanksgiving is being robbed of its thanks, and there is not a sure way to stop it; but is it ever going to recover from it?

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