What’s your attitude toward the start of the holiday shopping season?

Some retailers have pushed their Black Friday sales campaigns back to Thanksgiving Day, and other marketers have special promotions running all week. Today’s Question: What’s your attitude toward the start of the holiday shopping season?

  • Emery

    Black Friday will one day be dwarfed by Cyber Monday–the Monday after the 4 day Thanksgiving Weekend.

  • reggie

    Black Friday, which now starts on Thursday, even though there were a couple of women in California in line at a Walmart as early as last week (I kid you not!), reminds me of the two-year presidential election cycle. Insane.

    There is a wicked bit of oxymoronic humor in the idea that one saves more by spending more. Maybe there’s nothing “oxy” about it: it’s just moronic.

  • Sam

    I briefly considered standing in front of my Target Store where the bell ringers once stood, signing up people to pledge a three-month Target-free protest of it’s Thanksgiving opening. Three months seems about the right amount of time to make the point. I’ll just have to fill out a suggestion card instead, on my own behalf, as I’m not much of a community organizer.

    Does anyone else feel like the American consumer is treated no better than an industrial farmed milk cow ?

  • Gary F

    Never have “got” the whole Black Friday thing. Maybe it’s because I’m a guy and usually have done most of my shopping later in the month. I take a day or half day off of work and go during the week when the crowds are less.

    And, yes, the internet is getting more of my business.

    Black Friday is a great day to do lots of other things other than going to a shopping mall.

  • Steve the Cynic

    I feel sorry for all those folks who have come to believe the lie that stuff will make them happy and who will interrupt their quality time with family and friends to go shopping. And I’m angry about the tyranny of the Invisible Hand that requires workers to be at their employers’ places of business and appear happy instead of enjoying the holiday.

  • JEB

    Honestly, I’ve been hitting the craft fairs and boutiques for the past couple of weeks because I’m trying to shop small and local this year. It means my holiday shopping started a little earlier than I prefer, but my money isn’t going to those large corporations who see fit to encroach on the holiday celebrating thankfulness for what we have by enticing us to buy buy buy what we don’t.

  • CLee

    I certainly won’t shop on Thanksgiving Day. I believe in holidays for all people and will not be a part of encouraging retailers to open “early”. I believe what Oprah always said that if you know about an abuse, you can’t pretend that you don’t. If you know about the abuse of workers, be it low pay, bad working conditions, discrimination or anything else and you continue to patronize that business then you are a party to stealing from all the workers who must endure the abuse.

  • Jim G

    It’s Deja Vu all over again, another Ground Hog’s Day, if you will. My mother’s birthday is Veterans’ Day and as I shopped for her present I couldn’t miss the Holiday decorations already in full display.

    When will we ever wake-up to the truth that things don’t make us happy. Relationships make us happy. Build relationships with your family, friends, and loved ones on Thanksgiving Day. Don’t make the richest corporations in the world richer. They don’t care about us or our traditions.

    Thanksgiving was started by President Washington in 1789 and was made an annual holiday in 1863 by Abraham Lincoln. Its purpose is to provide the country with an on-going collective opportunity to give thanks for our many blessings. We need to collectively give thanks for the blessings our country has received over the past year on Thanksgiving Day, not give profits to the greedy. My advice to merchants is: Don’t kill the turkey that lays the Golden Egg.

  • Lydia

    I will not be shopping on Thanksgiving (nor the day after) but I will be consuming both goods and services that require others to be at work that day. We’ll be renting a small place for the long weekend which requires staff to work. We’ll be having Thanksgiving dinner at the on-site resaurant which will require kitchen, bar and service staff to work. Wouldn’t it be great if every non-religious holiday was a day off for everyone? I couldn’t say where to draw the line, but I suspect that even if the big box stores stayed closed there would still be a huge number of people in the USA who ‘have’ to go to work on Thanksgiving.

  • CJ

    Don’t drink the sales kool-aid

    (a little 60s humor there)

    I make gifts for friends and family. Canned goods are always a fav, as is my famous (in small circles) gardener’s soap. Making gifts with kids to teach them the value of putting something of yourself into a gift for a loved one is, IMHO a much better use of holiday time than the whole shopping addicts on overdrive thing. What I don’t make come from local artists, second hand stores, used book/music stores.

    I made a choice long ago that I would fashion my own holiday and not let the commercialized consumerized insane overdrive with glitter and soundtrack ruin the beauty of the season’s spirit for me and mine. My version of black friday involves driving out in the country to where they consider it a gift to have the volunteer cedar trees removed from the ditches. It’s sort of a Charlie Brown kind of tree in some ways, but it is magic, fresh, never spray painted and looks magnificent with our hand made ornaments. The spirit of the holiday season is about celebration, hospitality and companionship, not sales.

  • Paul

    The earlier we can begin to pervert the meaning of Christmas through consumerism, the more terrible will be our punishment in the afterlife. :)

  • linda

    what governs my holiday spending is not what time the stores open, it is how much expendable cash I have on hand. I am sorry for people who must alter their holiday plans to accomodate their employers’ hours. When I was a young mother, I worked every thanksgiving because I got time and a half. That helped with my holiday spending. You can’t have it both ways. We just ate later or earlier depending on when I had to be to work. Just enjoy the time you have and the money you have to spend.

  • Daniel

    It’s pathetic – people waiting hours in line for “stuff”, others forced to leave their families to work on Thanksgiving – pathetic. People who voluntarily leave the Thanksgiving table (or don’t even sit down to it) to go stand in line at Big Box of Shiny Things for the newest shiny things ought to be ashamed. Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday for reflection and sharing time with your family and friends. The Christmas Industry has reduced it to a sadly crazed orgy of supposedly-bargain shopping. I stopped celebrating Christmas about eight years ago, and the freedom of being released from the rampant materialism is invigorating. Holidays are times to be with your families. They want your love, not more crap.

  • Craig

    It’s disturbing to see how many people seek a “shopping high”, and how retailers now earn extra income by selling the shopping experience to those who can’t afford the merchandise. Restocking fees, for example, yield income from recreational shoppers who buy and return constantly; the fee is set just small enough to avoid entering into the initial purchase decision.

    Another example is the newly resurrected layaway plan, whereby the store acts as an unregulated bank (with terrible terms and fees) for those who wish to feel like they have “purchased” all of the items their kids want.

  • Carrie

    There’s plenty of time for shopping after Thanksgiving day. All the stores will still have plenty of “deals” too. It can wait.

  • david

    Yuck!! It’s pathetic, but then i don’t see the point of annual mandatory gift day.

  • GregX

    just like politics – it never ends.

  • Rich in Duluth

    Personally, I think it’s sad that people are so caught up in trying to buy happiness. But, isn’t this what capitalism is all about?

  • Ann

    I won’t be shopping. I have to get rid of junk and most of the people I know want to get rid of it also.I suppose I might buy something if I see something that is useful.

  • James

    Thanksgiving was originally intended to be just that, a day of thanks and a celebration of the harvest. The date used to float around region by region.

    Lincoln designated the last Thursday in November as Thanksgiving, and that’s the way it was for about 75 years.

    During the Great Depression, merchants asked Roosevelt to move Thanksgiving forward a week to allow an extra week to Christmas shop. He did, but many states did not follow. Eventually Congress designated the 4th Thursday in November as Thanksgiving, as it is today.

    And now the mechants have eaten Thanksgiving!

    I will not take part in the early madness, but may hit the stores later in the weekend. Kind of depends on the weather.

    Back to the subject of Thanksgiving. I think Canada has it right. Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving the second Monday of October…when we have Columbus Day in the US.

    Early October is an excellent time for Thanksgiving:

    - harvest season has just ended

    - there are lots of fall chores (for homeowners and cabin owners) to get done

    - universtity students need the break (and won’t be coming home in 3 weeks for Christmas)

    - driving conditions are generally good

    - there is at least a month between Thanksgiving and the start of Christmas shopping

    - Detroit does not play Dallas

    Thanksgiving, like politics, is just one of the broken things in the US that could be fixed, but will remain unchanged.

  • Marcus

    Here we observe a North American Consumer Drone in its natural environment. Note the peculiar behavior of expending resources it does not have to procure objects of no survival significance what so ever. These frivolous will be gifted to other consumer drones in this specimen’s social grouping, and upon receiving the gift, the second consumer drone will promptly place the object in a garage and forget about it for the next several decades. This irrational and largely self-destructive behavior baffles scientists and leads many researchers to question earlier assumptions that these creatures possessed a rudimentary form of sentience.

  • Mary

    I can’t stand shopping any time of year. The holiday shopping is the worst. I will never be enticed to shop on Black Friday and I think shopping on Thanksgiving Day should be outlawed. People working in retail only get Thanksgiving and Christmas off. I think if the corporate greed machine is going to force their workers to work on a holiday, then the CEO and everyone under him should be working too – on the floor of the store.

  • Philip

    A pastor once told me about how you can determine what’s important in a person’s life. You examine their calendar and their checkbook register. This consumer driven orgy is really sad and pathetic.

  • Suzanne

    Dread. I wish it were every four years like the Olympics (or at least like they used to be).

  • Suzie

    I hope the owners of the stores that just have to open earlier and earlier each year pay their employees at least triple overtime for working on Thanksgiving – if the employee volunteers to work that day. And that the owners are there in the stores at the same time, working the floor and not hiding in their homes.

    ps – I don’t shop on “Black Friday”. Last year I made my biggest purchase on the Saturday after in my small home town – and the shop owner not only delivered my purchase before Christmas – he set it up and (for a very small amount) recycled my old TV.

  • Alison

    I don’t like the disappearance of rest and family time on holidays. Some jobs like health care are necessary. However, I believe time for family and worship and rest is more important that consumerism. I am upset that retailers do not recognize this and continue to push America’s society towards materialism leading our families to be even more divided. To me it is very sad. I challenge businesses to “save the holidays” challenging people to think ahead and avoid shopping on holidays.

  • Owen

    If you don’t like it, don’t do it. Relax and enjoy your turkey.

  • David

    I have never participated in Black Friday. I don’t really get the appeal of people who do it. Sure there are great deals but why are people so interested in material things. It make me sick.

    If you ask me, it also justifies flying planes into buildings to prove a point.

    We live in a society where we need to newest and greatest material thing to “survive”, but we ignore the wake up calls.

  • georges

    Well, I see the ultra-liberals are all speaking up today, in a vain attempt to force others to live the way the libs want everyone to live…..

    Demanding that the BIG nanny government make it a crime for a store to be open on one of the 3 days a year the leftists pretend that “family” and “relationships” are really the most important thing in the whole wide world.

    Har

    Fact is, shopping is our National Sport, our National Passion, our National Craving. People WANT to pursue “stuff”……”things”………consumer products……..

    Nearly everyone gives lip service to Family, etc., every once in a while, but what we really really WANT is more things to buy, capture, possess, bring home and add to the already obscene pile of stuff we already have.

    Stuff is what motivates us……not family.

    And, the loudest complainers worship stuff just as much as the Early Shoppers. They just aren’t honest enough to admit it.

    So, stop trying to control what other people do. If, like me, you don’t want to shop on Thursday, or Friday, then don’t. But leave those folks who do to their own choices. And be happy for the workers getting overtime pay. They are.

    Take a day off from bullying others. Intolerance is ugly. Let it go. Be happy, like the workers. You may get the hang of Freedom some day, in spite of your liberal self.

    Har

  • Jim G

    @ georges

    Grinch, welcome back! I missed you. You stated your position with eloquence. Now, we just have to find a compatible donor for that heart.

  • Linda in Plymouth

    Does shopping issues really matter if the largest funder of the Progressives is George Soros and HE just bought into Wal Mart! Why ? He wants to turn WalMart into a Unionized shop…the hell with low prices for us..build up that union control that does so well..e.g., Hostess foods had over 327 different Union contracts to deal with every day. They wasted money on hiring 38 attorneys to deal with these to ensure they were in compliance every day.

    Soros can buy WalMart, he can have his Move On.org orchestrate protests this week against WalMart and then some day he can die with more money and his one world order crap. Too bad Obama is supporting this UN Agenda 21_ it is part of the One World Order crap that Clinton also endorsed in his speeches. Does MN want to see our lands be controlled by the UN and have them tell us where to live or how many children to have? It was Biden who said, he understood China’s one child law and with that is forced abortions to ensure their law. Sad. So why MN not care about Agenda 21? Do they even know what it is? NPR won’t talk about it because Soros gives them millions each year to do his bidding, to spread the stories he wants us to hear and keep us from the truths.

    The United Nations 20-year-old program, Agenda 21, seeks to co-opt individual governments in order to eventually create a “one-world government” that will assign privately held land to the control of the collective, ensuring its “sustainability.” Worse still, the UN’s Agenda 21 has even laid out plans for “depopulation” or rather, “population control. Read the UN Agenda papers and see for your self.

  • steven

    Lets distract, shop more and ignore the real issues, because that is the way to keep us happy :) so says Progressive ideology. I am sending my Christmas gift money this year to help the hundreds of Israeli kids that lost their homes and toys to the 789 rockets that smashed into Israel in the past 345 days per the National Security Agency data from NASA sat monitoring. 789 Hamas radical tIslamic terrorist rockets fired and yet,our media didn’t cover that until Israel took out their Hamas leader with a drone. What does that say about our media news that asks such important questions as what is your shopping attitude?

    Ever notice that the left leaning media seems to only get interested in the under dogs and then especially if they are non whites regardless if they are terrorist supporters? Isn’t that a weird thing. Then again, years later, our White House still calls the Ft Hood army massacre a “work place violence” issue instead of calling it as it is, an Islamic terrorist attack by our own officer. wow.

  • David

    Boycottish.

  • Catherine

    “Eh ? ” (shrug).

    For the few gifts I buy, I shop during the year. I know what the recipients like & want. When I see it, I get it & stash in a Holiday box in the closet. Black Friday & the weekend is time for me to make up the weaths for 3 relatives graves, wrap gifts on hand, do Holiday cards (bought at after Christmas sale last year) & stay OUT of the stores & malls. Peaceful !

  • JasonB

    I used to be disgusted by consumerism. Now I don’t sweat it. It turns the economic wheels, and satisfies some people’s base need to spend money in order to be happy.

  • Wally

    Not participating in the shopping orgy.

    I will boycott stores that opened on Thanksgiving day, dissing the holiday and forcing people to work.

    I will avoid stores that have obnoxious ads on TV and radio, which includes most of the big-box stores. And I don’t shop at Walmart, Target, and JCP anyway, for other reasons. Won’t be shopping at the online giants like Amazon.

    I will do most of my shopping on Craigslist, Goodwill and other used shops, or make my gifts.

    My decisions are made easier by the fact that 90% of the crap is made in China, and I don’t buy stuff made in countries where a divergent opinion can get you imprisoned, tortured, or killed.