Passing the Buck: Stores to be Open on Thanksgiving Day

20 Nov

With Thanksgiving just over a week away, the countdown to “Black Friday” has begun. People are making plans on which stores to hit, when to hit them and which to skip. Retailers wanting to take advantage of consumers ready to spend their money (not all of it hard earned) are preparing to cut into the Thanksgiving holiday and start opening at as early as 8 pm.

And in order to keep the illusion of “Black Friday” deals going, retailers open up at increasingly earlier and earlier hours. Some stores opening on Thanksgiving night. Websites across the internet devoted to Black Friday list the hours of retail stores for eager shoppers to plan their shopping attack.

According to bfads.net[1] there are a total of 11 stores opening at some time on Thanksgiving day. Of those 11, three of the stores (Meijer Thanksgiving, Gander Mountain and Walgreens) will be open before 10 am. Workers at those 11 stores will have to find another day to celebrate Thanksgiving with their family and friends.

Something to keep in mind the next time shopping there or one of their warm and fuzzy commercials plays on the TV or radio.

Workers are not taking this lack of family friendliness lying down. Walmart employees in Los Angeles held a walkout in October and the latest Black Friday walk out builds on that foundation. [2]  The idea is spreading nationally at this point via sites on the internet such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Tmbler.

At this point the number of strikers is small compared to the total number of people employed by Walmart. In fact, Walmart is dismissing the walkout in a statement which “Wal-Mart spokeswoman said the number of workers who are raising concerns is very small and don’t represent the views of the vast majority of its workforce of 1.3 million.”[2]

It’s time customers and companies learn employees are tired of being treated like lemmings. Instead treat them with respect and dignity. For all the stores open on Thanksgiving, how many non-store employees will be with their family and friends all day? How many will be out shopping after they are done eating their Thanksgiving lunch or dinner? This has nothing to do with “class warfare” or the “evil rich”.  It does everything to do with old, traditional American family values. Those same values where are disappearing year-by-year, day-by-day right before our eyes.

According to a recent poll by Think Finance, “Some 45 percent of those polled said the holiday season brings so much financial pressure, they would prefer to skip it altogether. “[3] Many people apparently have no self control and buy into the hype of Black Friday and the whole holiday shopping season to the point it severely stresses them out.

Do consumers demand the stores be open to spend their money? Or is it just the opposite with the stores staying open and marketing (persuading) the consumers they must spend their money on products and services? The answer, as with most things, is somewhere between the two.

 

Source –

  1. bfads.net
  2. CNN – Wal-Mart workers plan Black Friday walkout
  3. CNBC -Why One Poll Says 45% Would Rather Skip Christmas
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4 Responses to “Passing the Buck: Stores to be Open on Thanksgiving Day”

  1. Lorraine November 21, 2012 at 4:39 am #

    Then there is the additional burden on public saftey. Police and hospitals which usually run on a skelaton(sp) staff on Thanksgiving have to increase their staffing. There will be a need for more police to work for crowd control, traffic accidents, car jacking, pickpockets, shoplifters, etc. and more hospital staff for the broken toes, slip and falls, and concussions that occur with mob mentality. This takes these important people away from their families also. Perhaps municipalities which are struggling with meeting ther public safety budgets should pass an ordinance to ban the opening of these stores in their individual city limits. Outlawing the madness might be the only way to stop it.

    • Chris November 27, 2012 at 9:45 am #

      I agree with everything except more legislation, for now. Hopefully the retailers will see they have reached the saturation point of sales and opening earlier only spreads out the sales they would have made. This in turn ends up costing them money and they scale back to something more “reasonable”.

      • Lorraine December 3, 2012 at 4:42 am #

        I also would hate to see legislation, Chris, but I am reminded of the first-year law school arguement about free speech and yelling fire in a crowded theater. If the retailers cannot police themselves, than in the interest of public safety it needs to be addressed through legislation. Enticing large crowds to gather outside an establishment to get an advertised “doorbuster” that results in stampedes, injuries, brawls and arrests is just as much of a threat to public safety as yelling fire in a crowded theater. Proscuting the retailers for inciting a riot may be the only way to end the madness. I am old enough to remember when the Friday after Thanksgiving wasn’t a media event. People still shopped but the didn’t do it with a mob mentality. I would like to a return to that saner time.

      • Chris December 3, 2012 at 2:12 pm #

        Interesting point to consider regarding creating a public safety hazard with the “doorbusters”. Instead of new legislation, using current legislation could prove worthwhile. The cost of the lawsuits would indeed hit the retailer’s bottom line. They, along with the lack of increased sales at the earlier hours, could force them to rethink the value of their sale tactics. I too would like to return to a saner, less mob mentality time as well.

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