Black Friday Ambivalence

On the one hand, I find the whole idea of Black Friday shopping awful (and in particular the violence that can be associated it with folks going crazy for bargains). On the other hand, this tweet sums up how I feel about the mocking going on in the media and on social networks:

Yay! More smug tweets from people of some means making fun of people of less means for trying to save money!
@samplereality
Mark Sample

What this sums up for me is that the Black Friday phenomenon is a systemic problem (see the New York Times for an interesting piece on this), but the responses to it tend to focus on the individuals involved, which is not very helpful. Sure, it’s easy for me to proclaim shopping at midnight for bargain toys craziness, but I a) don’t have children and b) have a job that pays enough to allow me to pay more for those toys. Some people aren’t so lucky — and that’s not something I should be smug about. If you want to complain about Black Friday, blame the system not the individuals.

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