Black Friday Death Count.com
With 'Black Friday' in the books for 2013, it's a good time to examine all sides of the debate. I have friends who look forward to the all night shopping with friends and family. I have friends who work retail and were forced to give up their Thanksgiving because so many retailers decided to try to get the jump on holiday shopping by opening up for Black Friday pricing as early as 6pm THURSDAY.
There are groups of people that decided spending time with family and friends was more important than getting into the mayhem that comes with 'doorbuster sales', There are those that are waiting for "Small Business Saturday" so they can support the 'mom and pop' shops in the community.
And there are those that are all about the blood lust. From late Thursday afternoon through Friday night, Facebook and Twitter were filled with "Black Friday Fight Videos" and stories of pushing, shoving, and general stupidity in order to save a couple of bucks.
But as is the way of the internet, very old, very tragic, stories were being rehashed as new: "Walmart Worker Trampled to Death in Black Friday Tragedy on Long Island", "Shooting at a Toys R' Us Kills Two" and others were popular 'shares' on social media throughout the period. And absolutely they are very tragic stories. But they happened in 2008. That seemed to be the last of the REAL craziness surrounding this 'shopping holiday'. Many retailers started putting in some safeguards so tragedies like that wouldn't continue to happen.
There was a shooting this year in a Kohl's parking lot near Chicago where a police officer was dragged by a car of shoplifters. The driver was shot and injured.
It's gotten so people WANT to know about the insanity going on around Black Friday, so someone has actually started the website "Black Friday Death Count.com". It goes back to 2006 and tracks every death and every injury connected with the shopping days.
It's also gotten The Onion involved with their headline today: "42 Million Dead in Bloodiest Black Friday Weekend on Record".
The bottom line is that the stores made a LOT of money over the past 36 hours. So much in fact that you can pretty much guarantee that Black Friday will continue to start on Thanksgiving Day again in 2014. It's up to you whether you want to participate in it, or just tweet about it. Me? I'm spending time with friends and family, shopping local and being willing to spend the extra 10 bucks to not become a statistic.