Belfast Telegraph

Black Friday: United States can keep its festival of greed

By Frances Burscough

Black Friday? Where the hell did that come from?

Actually, you'll get no prizes for guessing, because it's the same place that most of our consumer-driven crazes come from. The USA, of course.

In America they've had Black Friday for years.

The feast of Thanksgiving is traditionally observed on the last Thursday of November and the day afterwards, which is also a public holiday in the States, became a bit like our Boxing Day when stores across the country dropped their prices in the hope of cashing in on some of that good old-fashioned bonhomie.

Last year, if you recall, there were a few tussles and scrapes in the aisles of major retailers.

In the news there were undignified scenes as shoppers, who had queued up outside the night before, all grabbed for the best bargains at the same time and security guards had to be called in.

So it seemed Black Friday had arrived here once and for all.

Of course this year nobody wanted to be caught out. Every imaginable shop from Asda to Tesco and Sainsbury's to Sam's Yer Man For A Bargain were all in on the act, inundating us with adverts for days in advance and we, as consumers, all followed in droves, whether we can afford it or not.

The scenes on this year's news speak for themselves, with reports of people physically fighting over a TV.

Personally, this whole thing appals me.

What kind of society are we turning into, where common decency goes by the wayside the moment we smell a bargain?

I for one stayed home yesterday because I just didn't want to be part of this orchestrated festival of greed and vulgarity.

Welcome to the seventh circle of Hell. As for Thanksgiving, no one even mentioned it.

Belfast Telegraph

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