So, this is Black Friday for our neighbours to the south, the United States. It is a bizarre ritual to a Canadian. A lot of mind boggling violence and crass consumerism at its worst; it makes no sense to the majority of us, up here. So you save a few bucks, is that really worth your dignity, your ethics or your common courtesy? Is it really worth having the rest of the world stare at you, aghast and embarrassed on your behalf?
Maybe I am prejudiced; I am anti-shopping even during the accepted “shopping” seasons. I hate the activity. I much prefer to peruse items that I need, on line. It allows me to think, compare and think again, in order to prevent any impulse buys. The selection is global and the physical, brick and mortar stores simply can’t compete. I don’t need to deal with rude or apathetic staff or their even more undesirable counterparts – other shoppers. This is my hard earned money, I will spend it where and how I choose. I pick my vendors carefully, deciding who deserves my money. And so many places have proven themselves unworthy of my dollars.
I don’t see lining up all night for a game unit or a cell phone. Standing out in the rain or cold for tickets to a movie; exactly what are the life priorities of someone like this? Is there really nowhere else you can spend your valuable time? Family, for starters – maybe improve your mind instead of murdering off innocent brain cells watching the goings-on of a bunch of British boarding school prats living in some magical fantasy world. Muggles? Did we really need a word like “muggle”?
The world saddens me a little more each day and when I see something like the revolting business of Black Friday? I begin to wonder if there is any hope for us.
So little is required to make someone else feel needed, feel valued and yet, it is somehow much more important to catch a few bucks off a television, a device that will further alienate us from family, friends and society.
When – Oh When – will we wake up to the reality of the responsibility we all shoulder, as human beings, toward each other? Why do any of us feel that looking after the other guy is someone else’s job? Government, churches, charitable societies; if everyone, with an I.Q. that is rated above that of pond scum, did something for someone else – something without expectation of reward. A bag of groceries to someone in need and we all know someone in need. Instead of the fancy ass game unit, some boots or shoes for a child or school supplies donated to a local school so some child doesn’t suffer the embarrassment of being a visible “have-not” in a society of vulgar materialism.
This is the big season for Westerners. Their Christmas time – joy to the world and peace on earth. So many of them expelling hot air over having their “Merry Christmas” taken from them instead of spreading some joy to the world and helping to foster peace.
Put your friggin’ wallet away, stop supporting the super-rich corporations and look around you. Look at everything you have now, more than most of the inhabitants of this world. Teach your children gratitude, teach them compassion and teach them humility. Those are the best gifts you can ever bestow upon them, in any season.
Black Friday – aptly named; black is the colour of rot, of decay and in this case, the death of any semblance of a civilized society.