The hypocrisy of Black Friday


Photo taken by Mariam Hanna.

Alyssa Hart, Co-editor-in-chief

Ahh Thanksgiving, the day dedicated to showing your gratitude and celebrating all of the things you’re thankful for– all the while spending time with those you love. The typical celebration includes feasting on a home cooked meal and confessing what you’re grateful for. 

But when the clock strikes midnight, all of that goes out the window with the arrival of Black Friday. 

Everybody has heard those jaw dropping Black Friday stories one time or another, usually involving somebody getting trampled in a Walmart or two people fighting over the last ninja bullet. It’s crazy to think that all of this materialistic chaos is taking place just hours after a holiday dedicated to being thankful for what you already have. 

Black Friday is everything Thanksgiving is against. It is centered around greed and instant gratification, as people actively search for items to add to their vault of materialistic products. Some people set up tents on Thanksgiving night to wait out for those buy-one-get-one offers and 50 percent off store-wide sales, as opposed to spending time with their loved ones.

For every year after 2008, the percent of the total amount of money spent on Black Friday has increased from the year before. In 2019, a total of $729.1 billion dollars were spent on Black Friday, making it by far the biggest shopping day of the year, with an average Black Friday shopper spending an average of just over $1000. 

This extent of spending is simply insane, and completely overshadows the purpose of Thanksgiving. Although some people may be Black Friday shopping to get gifts for the upcoming holiday season, a lot of this money is just being wasted on useless products. It is estimated that around 52 percent of Black Friday shoppers later regret their purchases, which really shows how shallow and overhyped Black Friday is. 

In a span of 12 years, there have been over 117 injuries and 12 deaths resulting from Black Friday retail shopping. No flatscreen TV, Xbox, or laptop is worth killing or fighting over, no matter how discounted the price is. 

Don’t get me wrong, buying something on Black Friday usually doesn’t hurt anyone and doesn’t make you a bad person. However, Black Friday undermines the purpose of Thanksgiving and can cause people to lose track of what is really important– which should be your family, friends, and loved ones. It can turn a time which is supposed to be spent showing gratitude into a time of superficial spending and selfishness. 

So, as the Thanksgiving season grows near, remember to be grateful for what you already have and focus on what truly matters. And please don’t push anyone over to get the last PS5 in Best Buy.