Instead, it has become a day when retailers across the country attempt to lure in shoppers with dreams of what they could have.
Black Friday used to be the traditional start of the holiday shopping season, and that’s great. Those who don’t mind the crowds and love to find great deals can have a field day on the day after Thanksgiving.
Of course, there are always those few die-hard shoppers so desperate to save a few bucks on the latest and greatest electronic gadget that they’re willing to camp out for a few days in order to be in the front of the line when doors open.
But this year, Black Friday spilled over into Thursday. Many retailers offered huge discounts on various items starting at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving evening.
We can’t blame the shoppers for heading out and snatching up these deals. That’s their prerogative.
The retailers who chose to open their doors, however, need to take a step back and take a closer look at the true meaning of the Thanksgiving holiday.
People should have the opportunity to spend the day with family and friends, reflecting on the blessings they’ve enjoyed over the past year. It’s a secular holiday, so even those without religious affiliations celebrate with turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie.
But when major retailers decide to open on Thanksgiving, it’s not the boss in the big office with the cozy leather chair who has to give up his or her holiday. No, it’s the other employees — many of whom work for not much more than minimum wage — who are forced to abandon their family holiday celebrations and head in to work.
To make matters worse, they’re forced to deal with waves of rabid deal-seekers on the most hectic 24-hour shopping stretch of the year.
At a time when we should be taking time out of our busy schedules to reflect on all we have to be thankful for, Thanksgiving has instead been transformed into a day of want and greed.
It’s a sad way to celebrate this special holiday.
Our Views reflects the majority opinion of the members of the Grand Haven Tribune editorial board: Kevin Hook, Cheryl Welch, Matt DeYoung, Alex Doty and Fred VandenBrand. What do you think? E-mail us a letter to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org or log-in to our website and leave a comment below.