Black Thanksgiving.

I recently heard about how some stores are opening their doors around dinner time on Thanksgiving. This made me really mad, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. I read blogger Matt Walsh‘s very blunt and honest outrage about this insanity, and it made me want to express my own thoughts. (Probably not as blunt as him, only because I don’t want people to hate me.)

I must admit, last Thanksgiving after the turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes and pies were eaten and cleaned up, my Grandlienard “siblings” and I went to Walmart to check out their sales. But only because family time was over, and Walmart was on the way home. But it was actually really fun. Not because we all were “sale crazy” or because we couldn’t live without paying just a few bucks less for what we were shopping for, but because it was one of the first times all 5 of us went for a spontaneous trip to the store together. So in a way I’d still call it “family time.”

Does this mean I’m advocating Thanksgiving shopping? Heck no. Even as impatient as I am, I can still wait until Friday (or late Thursday night after Thanksgiving is over) to face the hordes. Black Friday shopping was an event when I was growing up. Part of the fun of the Thanksgiving holiday. I’m pretty sure my mom and I drove around the King of Prussia Mall parking lot for 45 minutes one year to find an open parking spot. (And we probably did the creepy stalk-till-they-get-in-their-car thing too…gotta love that move.) But it was called Black Friday for the obvious reason that it was on FRIDAY.

In all honesty, the fact that stores are open at all on Thanksgiving really makes me sad. Sad for the poor people who have to miss out on turkey and stuffing to work the cash registers. And sad for the people who are choosing to miss out on turkey and stuffing in order to BUY STUFF. I mean, Thanksgiving is all about GIVING THANKS. Being thankful for what you have and the people in your life. Doesn’t going out and buying MORE totally contradict what the holiday is all about?

On his blog, Matt Walsh urges people to protest the opening of stores on Thanksgiving. Teach the stores that we really do care more about family and being thankful than the stuff we can buy for just a little less than if we wait another day. In reality, this probably won’t happen, because as Americans, many of us feel that we always need more. But what if it did happen? That would be so cool.

And don’t get me wrong, it’s not like I am miss thang who is always thankful and never feels the need to buy more. It’s a struggle for me to not get caught up in the gift giving and receiving part of the holidays too. I am human. But that doesn’t mean I like that part of me or that part of being human. So let’s change it. Let’s spend the WHOLE day with family (even if they drive you bonkers) and think of all that we have and all that we’ve been given. Let’s protest Black Thanksgiving, and do the crazy thing and wait until Black Friday to face the madness. I’m sure there will still be plenty of stuff to buy, hordes of crazy people to push through, and great sales. I think our families are worth the few extra dollars we may spend by waiting to do our shopping on Friday. Who’s with me?!

“Why give thanks for what you have when there’s so much you don’t have? That’s the new meaning of Thanksgiving: count your blessings, and then buy some more blessings and count them again.”

-Matt Walsh “If you shop on Thanksgiving, you are part of the problem”