Opinion: Black Friday causes injuries

Emmy Johnson, Writer

Black Friday is known for priceless deals where many people can get their holiday shopping done in one day. But Black Friday is also known for injuries, aggressive shoppers and busy shops, workers and parking lots. 

Because of the large stickers saying “sale,” shoppers feel as if they are scoring a deal when in reality these “sales” aren’t as great as people think. Corporate businesses specifically put out mediocre products covered up by a deal, making consumers feel as if they are getting the best product when they actually aren’t.

What’s even worse is the amount of injuries and deaths resulting from Black Friday. Black Friday has accumulated 14 deaths and 117 injuries going as far back as 2006, according to Black Friday Death Count. 

According to Black Friday Death Count, this number is expected to rise for 2021 with around nine injuries and three deaths per year. The amount of injuries and deaths have become such a problem that some corporate stores will train employees to expect stampedes, brawls and sometimes shootings for Black Friday shifts, according to CNN.

Speaking of employees, Black Friday is possibly the worst shift to work. Employees for big leading brands know when Black Friday rolls around, they have to do everything in their power to regulate the shoppers.

 On Thanksgiving, employees are given time to spend with family until 10 p.m. Then they begin stocking, stamping sales and preparing registers which takes until 12 a.m. when the doors open and mass amounts of people run, as reported by CNN.

Black Friday has begun to start sooner rather than later. Stores used to open at 5 a.m, but in recent years opening times have changed to 12 a.m. to compete against other consumer stores. Compared to paid holiday time off, Black Friday isn’t included. Worker breaks end as soon as Black Friday starts. With 40 percent of annual commission being made that weekend, it’s no wonder a chain needs all hands on deck— at least the paycheck is good.

While Black Friday is great for annual commission, the aftermath is filled with waste, tearing apart the environment.

Black Friday churns up to 429,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions from cars traveling from store to store according to Forbes. This doesn’t fall upon shoppers, however, but chain stores are primarily to blame for product waste from foods to clothes, and even electronics. Anything with a sale sticker on it after Black Friday is removed or put in a bin to be trashed, resulting in large amounts of unnecessary waste, according to Forbes.

Comparing Black Friday to Cyber Monday, Cyber Monday doesn’t emit as many greenhouse gases as Black Friday does and doesn’t produce as much waste. Making Cyber Monday more environmentally friendly than Black Friday.

Cyber Monday is also a lot easier to buy gifts. Corporate stores are realizing the appeal to Black Friday has lowered and online discounts start the week of Thanksgiving and prices get lower up until Cyber Monday. This just makes shopping online so much more appealing, and better for everyone.

Overall Black Friday is filled with chaos, aggressive shoppers, stressed employees and so much more. This year it would be better to stay home and do your shopping online, giving a break to those around you and allowing people to truly celebrate the holidays.