Black Thursday?

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David Vavrinak, Junior Staff reporter

The retail store Toys R Us has recently made a controversial announcement: they are going to open their doors for Black Friday sales at 5:00 pm on Thanksgiving Day. That’s right–Turkey Day is now Toy Shopping Day as well.  There have been many arguments, some for and some against this action. There is a major conflict here between ethics and commerce, or maybe it’s the ethics of commerce.  Still the question remains: Do businesses have the obligation to stay closed on major holidays, or do they have the right to stay open in order to make money? Is opening this early going to be effective? How many people will even show up for these deals? Many questions have been brought up that make the managerial decision of Toys R Us seem unfair, as well as an action in violation of the traditions of Black Friday shopping.

Making employees go to work during a time where they are supposed to be with family, or at home being “thankful” for everything with which they have been blessed seems both unfair and unjust. Nobody should have to go to work on major holidays, especially those who are working for minimum wage. Even worse, the employees being deprived of a holiday are not going to be working voluntarily. According to www.change.org, employees of Toys R Us have created a petition that declares that they are sick of “sacrificing precious family time that they might not be able to enjoy any other day of the year.” Do big corporations have the right to take away their employees’ family time?

Another argument being brought up centers on the role of the family in this fast-paced 21st century society. Should this be a day to stay at home to commemorate family? Or is it an opportunity to go buy gifts for loved ones for another holiday? In many cases, Black Friday shopping is the way by which the majority of Christmas presents are purchased. When there are big corporations, especially the store “where kids can play,” starting their Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving Day, some have no choice but to go.

Thanksgiving Day is a day during which family is brought together. It is a day during which all of the blessings we take for granted are recognized. It is a day which loved ones should spend together. It is not a day during which one should be shopping for Christmas presents. Thanksgiving Day is not a day during which one should be caught in the “riots” of a hungry crowd, searching for sales. Is it really “Black Friday,” or is it becoming “Black Thursday?”

Sources:

http://www.change.org/petitions/toys-r-us-push-back-the-opening-of-retail-stores-to-black-friday-at-5am