Happy Buy Nothing Day

I choose not to participate in the always-crowded and frequently violent orgy of consumerism called Black Friday. I do my best to shop locally most of the time, I don’t like crowed craziness, and I know Black Friday is not really a help to local small businesses that can’t afford to deep-discount.

There’s an alternative celebration on the day after US Thanksgiving that resonates more with me: Buy Nothing Day: 24 hours without any purchasing activity. I can’t always do it; sometimes the gas tank is empty or I’m flying home from Thanksgiving in another part of the country. But this year, I see no reason to spend any money today.

Wikipedia has a nice page on the history of Buy Nothing Day and some creative incarnations of anti-consumerism.

Meanwhile, society at large is going in the opposite direction. I was really hoping that the big-box store openings would be a flop. Unfortunately, there were big crowds leaving their families to chase down bargains. This, I see as a blow against workers’ rights. I very much doubt that all the employees working yesterday were volunteering to work on a holiday. In fact, there are demonstrations at Walmarts all over the country today, protesting this encroachment on workers’ family time. In my area of Western Massachusetts, it’ll be 3 p.m. at the Walmart in Hadley.


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2 Responses to “Happy Buy Nothing Day”

  1. I believe it is absolutely unfair to workers to expect them to work on a family holiday! Since I would never dream of getting into the kind of tussle that mad rush to shopping entails, my opinion on the matter is not worth much.

    Fran Civile recently posted… To Work at Home You Need to Be Well OrganizedMy Profile

    • Glad you agree, Fran. However, I take issue with the second part. Your opinion absolutely matters. I have always believed that one person CAN make a difference–especially when joining forces with others, but even when acting alone. When tens of thousands of us refuse to put up with that craziness, that’s when it will change.