Via Wikimedia Commons and

You won’t find me setting foot outside the house on the Friday after Thanksgiving. That’s partly because I have a deadline to meet and lot of revision to do. But I’ve never been a Black Friday shopper, because there’s nothing I hate worse than a crowd!

Lots of people don’t feel that way. I know some people who love shopping at midnight – or who view Black Friday as a yearly tradition, going with family members or friends to pick up bargain Christmas gifts. And I can see that – or at least, I could see it with the old Black Friday.
Not the new kind we have now. Not the kind where shoppers use pepper spray on others to get to the video games first. Not the kind where muggers wait by your car to shoot you for your merchandise when you come out. Not the screaming, elbowing, ugly mass of people I’ve seen on the news for the last few years.
I don’t believe it’s the economy that created this. These people aren’t trampling each other for food and clothing. They’re doing it for electronics.
I don’t believe they’re trying to get Christmas gifts for their precious children either. Not for a second. They’re buying the items for themselves, or to resell on eBay.
The retail community has encouraged and promoted this for their own benefit. They’ve set up a yearly invitation for the criminal element, the people with no ethics, the greedy and the truly ruthless to congregate in specific places at specific times to do their worst.
Regular bargain shoppers don’t stand a chance. And I think the retail stores should be legally culpable for anyone injured during the mayhem they have fostered.
What about you? Will you shop on Friday? If so, where and when? Daylight or nighttime? Do you feel safe at a Walmart? At a Best Buy?