“Yeah, I’ve never really been much for camping, I just don’t really like sleeping on the ground ----- wait, does camping out in Black Friday lines count?” Black Friday is so easy to rip on.
But I’m tired of Black Friday getting called out as dogshit American consumerism run rampant, because Black Friday is way more nuanced than dogshit. It’s totally weird yea, but just like Thanksgiving, Black Friday is an heirloom of early colonial and Native American relations.
So in theory our Thanksgiving meals are recreations of that pilgrim and native american Holiday Mixer, right. We get together and eat a certain set of foods because that’s what those guys did, and although pilgrim-imitation is no longer our main motivation for celebrating thanksgiving, it certainly seems like it still gets play as the root of the tradition.
Black Friday is of a similar root: we go out on the day after thanksgiving expecting heavy discounts on all products because that is exactly what the pilgrims did. After their Thanksgiving, those pilgrims plundered and straight up took the land, furs, crops, and other assorted goods with a mentality that paying full price for the products would have been a preposterous proposition. And so towards a more complete reenactment of early America: after the annual migration of the turkey from plate to stomach, Americans engage in plunder.
This isn’t normal consumerism, this is the turkey-triggered consumerism in your DNA.