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Black Friday: Rampant consumerism or family tradition?

Johnson City Press • Nov 25, 2019 at 5:06 PM

The leaves are falling, and so are the prices of whole frozen turkeys. It can mean only one thing: Thanksgiving is upon us.

The national holiday brings families and friends together to celebrate and appreciate the year’s bounty, but the day after has come to represent something else.

As the official kickoff to the Christmas shopping season, Black Friday is dedicated to hunting deals. National stores slash prices on consumer goods, especially electronics, and build demand by advertising doorbuster specials available in the wee hours of the morning.

The daylong shopping spree has been criticized by holiday traditionalists who say Black Friday’s creep into Thanksgiving runs counter to the purpose of the holiday and encourages stores to force employees to work instead of being with their families.

In some towns, the frenzied shopping and the scarcity of sale items have resulted in violence.

Others, however, hold their own Black Friday traditions. Whole families head out to stores, sometimes dressed in matching outfits, to scour sales for gifts. For them, the shopping day is a continuation of the togetherness left over from Thanksgiving.

Some thrifty shoppers on Black Friday find it a good opportunity to nab gifts for friends and family.

We know there are people out there on both sides of the discussion, so we want to hear from you. Is Black Friday a tasteless show of consumerism or a worthwhile shopping holiday?

Send your correspondence to [email protected]. Letters may be no longer than 300 words and may be edited for length, style or content.

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