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Black Friday is a waste of time, does not benefit shoppers

Logan Badgett, Staff writer

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    With promises of low prices, short supply and hordes of combative shoppers, Black Friday presents itself as one of America’s most excessive “holidays.”

    Black Friday is an all American creation, making it perfectly sensible for it to be ripe with greed and gluttony.

    Only becoming popularized in the late 80’s, Black Friday was first seen as the beginning of the Christmas shopping season, simply meaning it was time to take down the turkeys and pilgrims and put up the colored lights and fake snow, reports History.com.

    The more accurate (and more brutal) roots of Black Friday began in Philadelphia in the 50’s, according to The Balance.com, a U.S. financial advisory website.

    The term was first coined by the traffic cops and city police of Philly who were required to take long, 12 hour shifts to manage the swathes of suburbanites that cascaded into the city on the days following Thanksgiving. Shop owners also used it in reference to the enormous lines of unruly customers that swarmed their stores after the promises of big savings and promotions due to the upcoming Army-Navy football game, the annual playoff between featuring the United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point, New York, and the Navy Midshipmen of the United States Naval Academy (USNA) at Annapolis, Maryland, reports CNN.

    Today, Black Friday is a time for stores to slash prices, rid themselves of old inventory and throw as many products at desperate shoppers as they can. The shined and polished history of the name Black Friday is that it is a time for businesses to take their revenue “out of the red” and increase profits “into the black,” reports History.com.

    Even in the era of online shopping, Black Friday still manages to ring true to its violent past. Seven people died and 98 were injured in Black Friday related accidents from 2006 to 2014, reports Business Insider.

    If the threat of bodily harm, road rage and sleep deprivation are still not enough to dissuade any notion of venturing out early Friday morning, then maybe one more fact will; Black Friday deals are nowhere near as “charitable” as they make themselves out to be.

    Read the fine print of nearly any Black Friday sale item and it will almost certainly contain one or more restriction or qualifier that negates whatever savings it is meant to imply. While there are some instances where items truly are cheaper, no strings attached, many Black Friday items can be found at equally cheap or cheaper prices throughout the year, according to BusinessInsider.com.

    Black Friday is archaic, and with the recent emergence of Cyber Monday, its frantic 1 a.m. shopping trips and pushy suburban moms are finally becoming a thing of the past.

    With Cyber Monday, people can avoid the bedlam entirely, staying home and simply placing orders online while still taking advantage of retailers price cuts and discounts.          

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The School Newspaper of Plano Senior High School.
Black Friday is a waste of time, does not benefit shoppers