Peralta Community College District's Only Student-Run Publication
Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

Peralta Community College District's only student-run publication.

The Citizen

    Black Fridays go home!

    With a chilly rain or two and the smell of pumpkin spice lattes in the air, it’s clear the holiday season is here. A time of giving, family, and love. I love the holidays. I love wrapping presents and I love giving them even more. Plus, the peppermint hot cocoa is amazing. But then there is the holiday season’s dark side: Black Friday. 
    My parents would usually take us kids to see our grandparents during the holidays. The day after Thanksgiving every year, like many families, we would go to the mall and shop among the crowds and insanity. As a kid I thought it was tedious. As an adult, I think it’s just about one of the most ridiculous American traditions ever, next to “professional wrestling” and student loans. 
    It should come as no surprise that Black Friday has earned itself a dark history. In 2008 the first official Back Friday death occurred when a Wal-Mart employee was trampled to death after the store opened it’s doors at 5:00 AM. The crowd of shoppers refused to stop their stampede when other employees attempted to help the man. Later that day, two other people died in a violent altercation at a Toys ‘R Us. 
    In 2011 a woman with two children pepper sprayed a crowed of shoppers so she could be the first one to grab a few discount Xbox 360s. The video of that incident went viral online, and at least ten people were injured. In 2013 several people were shot, and another video made the rounds showing Black Friday shoppers coming to blows. 
    But the crazed shoppers aren’t even the biggest problem with Black Friday. At this point, you know what you’re getting into if you shop on Black Friday, and you make that choice. The biggest problem seems to be that many of the people working in some of the the busiest and most dangerous stores on Black Friday don’t have a choice. 
    Wal-Mart seems to be particularly guilty of forcing employees to work on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. Last week, on Nov. 13, Wal-Mart employees staged the first ever in-store sit-in at a Wal-Mart in Los Angeles protesting Black Friday and Wal-Mart’s poor treatment of their employees. Last year Wal-Mart saw over 15,000 Black Friday protests across the country and nine separate employee strikes. 
    So maybe this year we should either shop early or shop online. If we don’t buy into Black Friday, we can let it fade away with other obscurities of the past. Enough of the fighting over Xboxes and keeping retail employees from spending time with their own families. Maybe this year you could make your mom a popsicle jewelry box like when you were a kid. Moms love that kind of stuff.

    About the Contributor
    In the fall of 2019, The Laney Tower rebranded as The Citizen and launched a new website. These stories were ported over from the old Laney Tower website, but byline metadata was lost in the port. However, many of these stories credit the authors in the text of the story. Some articles may also suffer from formatting issues. Future archival efforts may fix these issues.  
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