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'Black Friday': Madness of a Lost Society

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Shopaholics Anonymous

Alexandra Bruce
September 7, 2013

This video has gone viral every time that I have run it on the day after Thanksgiving, since 2010.

The name "Black Friday" originated in Philadelphia, where it originally was used to describe the heavy and disruptive pedestrian and vehicle traffic which would occur on the day after Thanksgiving. Use of the term started before 1961 and began to see broader use outside Philadelphia around 1975. An alternative explanation later began to be offered: that "Black Friday" indicates the point at which retailers begin to turn a profit, or are "in the black".

Thanksgiving Day is a Federal holiday in the US, which occurs on every fourth Thursday of November. Many non-retail employees and schools give both Thanksgiving and the following Friday off, followed by a weekend, thereby increasing the number of potential shoppers. "Black Friday" has routinely been the busiest shopping day of the year since 2005 and it is considered to be the kick-off for the holiday shopping season, in the US economy's all-important retail sector.

In recent years, most major retailers have opened extremely early and offered promotional sales, some of which have disastrously culminated in people being crushed to death, underfoot by fellow frenzied shoppers.

I wonder if its message is as relevant today as it was in 2010 , 2011 and 2012?

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