Thanksgiving is a national holiday that has been celebrated since 1621 when the Pilgrims shared the autumn feast with the Wampanoag Native Americans. It is a holiday that has been somewhat skewed since its origins. Families still celebrate the traditional Thanksgiving feast with friends and family, but a good majority of Americans go through the motions of Thanksgiving dinner to get to the real festivities, also known as Black Friday.
Ever since the 1920’s the day after Thanksgiving has officially marked the holiday sales season in shops. The term “black” Friday refers to the day after Thanksgiving when the shops move from red to black in terms of sales. Storeowners have always wanted more time to sell and advertise sales, with intent to get more sales revenue during the season, but they did not want to encroach on Thanksgiving Day. In recent years Black Friday sales have started earlier and earlier and gone on longer and longer. Allowing more people to partake in the shopping festivities and feel as though they are receiving the biggest bang for their buck.
Black Friday has always had a negative connotation to it. Police in Philadelphia officially coined the term “black Friday” in the 1960’s when referring to the congestion of pedestrians and traffic. As popularity for the shopping event grows, so too does the infamy associated with it. Not only do stores jack up prices and then lower them to appear as sale price but also customers become volatile and belligerent. In 2008 an employee at Wal-Mart opened the doors at 5 o’clock am, Black Friday morning to a crowd of over 2,000. He was trampled to death and when help attempted to reach him, they too were injured. The tradition of Thanksgiving is becoming antiquated and Black Friday is taking its place.