Contradictions surround Black Friday

By Jordan Christmas
Flapjack Chronicle

Thanksgiving week. The week where everyone looks forward to spend time with their families and friends, with usually a week break from school and or work. That’s not how David Pruitt and his girlfriend spent Thanksgiving week. What did they do? They spent the week camped in front of one of the biggest stores in America known as Best Buy. Why where they camped in in front of Best Buy for a week? To get a TV for an outrageously high discount, due the Black Friday event.

“The discounts are usually good,” said David Pruitt. “But the TV I’m getting is $180.”

Every Friday following Thanksgiving Day, many Americans look forward to the event Black Friday where everything that is priced in stores are substantially lowered than that of a normal sale.

Black Friday in Bakersfield, Calif., over the years has been a big event, especially on Bakersfield’s most prominent street Rosedale Avenue. This area includes a parking lot plaza filled with stores, the main ones being Target, Walmart, and Best Buy all in order built right next to each other. People have spent more of their money on bigger items such as HDTVs, video game consoles like the Xbox 360, and PS3’s every year, as the event has gotten bigger and bigger.
Some residents camp out five days prior or sometimes the weekend before Black Friday, in their tent in the front of the store.

“I’ve been camped out here since Monday,” said David Pruitt, interviewed in front of Best Buy. The store actually had the longest line, though every store had either a small line or a packed parking lot. When the doors opened, everyone scrambled in to buy items that they wanted.

“I’m actually getting a TV for my grandfather,” Pruitt continued. “It’s a 50-inch for $180.”
Black Friday raised usual questions such as the timing and the consequences of having masses of people being at one spot.

“I think it’s kind of contradicting itself if you have an event where people want all these things right after a holiday where we are supposed to be thankful for everything in your life,” said DeAndre Jones, who was shopping on Black Friday for his grandmother. “I’m just here to get a TV and PS3 for her so she can play Blu-ray DVDs.”

Also on a week where everyone is supposed to thankful, there have been some incidents with Black Friday that could lead to the argument that greed is causing these incidents.

“Last year we had a fight that broke out in the Best Buy,” said Paul Tucker, who was working security for Black Friday his third year in a row. “They were fighting over one of the last Wiis [Nintendo Wii] that where on the shelf and we had to remove the two from the store and not let them back in.”

One subject often overlooked in all of the things surrounding Black Friday are the employees that work on those days.

“It definitely gets crazy,” said Brittney Colber, an employee at Target. “A lot of people are pushing and shoving, and running over each just to get the stuff that they want for a cheaper price.” She also talked how tough it could be on people who work on Black Fridays, as she has had experience working on Black Friday multiple times. “It sometimes can be annoying. A lot of people always asking for help, long lines at every register that we have open. It definitely tires you out when you’re done, but you earn your check in the end.”

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