Posted by troublemaker on November 19, 2011
“The retailers claim that they are simply responding to consumer demand.” – Ryan Witt of Political Buzz Examiner (1)
Retailers are right. They are simply responding to consumer demand. That is what Occupy Christmas wants to address, “consumer demand”. It is not illegal for Corporate America to cause employees to give up their Thanksgiving in the hopes of generating corporate profit the next day on what has become known as Black Friday. In fact, one could argue that since the consumer promotes this practice with their participation in Black Friday sales, that causing employees to go without Thanksgiving is not only culturally moral but culturally ethical as well. So rather than changing the law to force corporations to respect their employee’s thanksgiving, the goal at Occupy Christmas is to cause people to question their moral and ethical conduct. Instead of sending a message about the importance of Black Friday, let’s send a message concerning the importance of Thanksgiving.
Boycott Black Friday
You can send a clear message by staying home on Black Friday. If you really must shop on Black Friday, avoid large chain stores and especially those identified as placing Black Friday before Thanksgiving. By ignoring Black Friday, you will send a clear message that the new consumer holiday is not nearly as important as profiteers seem to think it is.
Boycott these Stores throughout the Season
Sending a message that you value Thanksgiving over Black Friday is a good start. But what good does it do if you give your money to the worst of the abusers the following Saturday or later in the holiday season. There are certain retailers who should receive an even larger message. Retailers who should be boycotted entirely this and future holiday seasons until they put the community before corporate profits.
Wal-Mart – Perhaps the largest offender, Wal-Mart will begin their Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving Day at 10:00 PM. You will recall Wal-Mart has been responsible for so much Black Friday hype that consumer deaths have taken place in their stores. After an employee death and consumers injured in 2008 (2), Wal-Mart was warned about the dangers of their conduct after a review by OSHA, but that warning did not prevent further Black Friday death during their Black Friday sale of 2010.(3)
Criminal charges were considered in 2010, but reports indicate that Wal-Mart executives simply bought their way out of those charges. USA Today reports a payment of $2,000,000.00 to avoid criminal prosecution (3). Wal-Mart later fought a federal fine of $7,000.00. And yet, their Black Friday sales not only continue but expand. I can only conclude that Black Friday profits are high enough that the fines and lawsuits over consumer and employee deaths are just part of the operating costs. If consumers continue to promote Wal-Mart’s Black Friday frenzy, I can only conclude that consumers agree that Black Friday is more important than employee lives and consumer safety.
Target Corp – Huffington Post reports that over 100,000 people have signed a petition asking Target Corporation not to start their Black Friday sales at Midnight on Thursday (4). Despite the petition, plans for Target to open at midnight continue. It seems clear Target does not much care about people voicing their opinion by petition. We feel it is time opinion be voiced by protest. Boycott Target Corporation this entire holiday season.
Best Buy Co. – Will start Black Friday sales at Midnight on Thanksgiving (3).
Kohls Co. – Will start Black Friday sales at Midnight on Thanksgiving (3).
Bon Ton Stores – Will start Black Friday sales at Midnight on Thanksgiving (3).
Macys – Will start Black Friday sales at Midnight on Thanksgiving. (4)
Toys R Us – Will open at 10:00 PM on Thanksgiving for Black Friday sales. (4)
Enough is enough. Occupy Christmas this holiday season, Occupy your family this Thanksgiving, and boycott Black Friday and these retailers until they allow their employees to Occupy their families as well. We are not asking that these profiteering practices be outlawed. We are just asking that you, the consumer, understand how your conduct affects others and care enough to regulate that conduct.