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Alternative Actions to Black Friday

November 23, 2009

This Friday, according to the Business community, is the busiest shopping day of the year. People are led to believe that the best holiday deals will be available to them, so people will line up early in the morning outside of stores and malls hoping to get one of these deals.

The news media will report on this shopping frenzy so that human greed and indulgence can be on display. What the news media won’t report on is how the public is being manipulated into participating in what the industry calls Black Friday.

However, there are alternatives to this madness. One general idea is to just not participate in the shopping madness. For years people have made the first Friday after Thanksgiving (Nov. 27) in the US (Nov. 28 internationally), “Buy Nothing Day.” Buy Nothing Day is essentially a moratorium on buying anything for 24 hours on the very day that the business world most wants us to ship.

A variation on that theme is the Really Really Free Market (RRFM), which is also practiced around the world. The RRFM is an anti-capitalist action where people get together to exchange goods for free. People give what they don’t need and take want they might need.

The RRFM takes place once a month on Grand Rapids and this month they will be holding the event on Black Friday. On Friday, November 27, from 1pm – 5pm, the RRFM will be held at the Division Avenue Arts Cooperative (DAAC), located at 115 S. Division in Grand Rapids.

One other action you could take on Black Friday is to stand in solidarity with workers who were recently fired from a Bissell warehouse in Chicago. People in Chicago and in Grand Rapids will be going to Kohl’s stores on Black Friday to inform people about how Bissell treats workers. Kohl’s is the largest retail distributor of Bissell Products, which is why they were chosen as a target for this action.

In Grand Rapids we will meet outside the Kohl’s store at 745 Center Dr., just off of Alpine Avenue near the Star Theaters. People will gather there at 1pm to hand out flyers to the public. You are encouraged to bring signs and invite your friends!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Nora Chamberlin permalink
    November 24, 2009 12:45 am

    As an extension of the Buy Nothing Day, adbusters is offering a chance to make an even stronger statement this Black Friday. They call it a Wildcat General Strike. In addition to not participating in the ridiculous frenzy of shopping, they are calling for an outright denial of consumption on all fronts. Turn off your tv, lights, appliances, computers, cell phones, park your cars, and instead read a book, take a walk, visit with friends, make a statement, gather outside of stores, dress in a Santa suit and play shopping cart bumper cars at your local Wal-Mart.
    Enjoy a day free of any and all products of the capitalist system, free from the consumer mentality. For more on the international Wildcat Strike check out this link.

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