The Hunger Games


Photo by 松林

Sage Smith, Staff Writer & Artist

Ah, Christmas time, snow is falling in large snowflakes, covering the ground and trees very gently. The house smells of hot chocolate and cinnamon rolls just out of the oven. The Christmas tree is lit and twinkling with many old and beloved ornaments from past Christmases and a few new ones as well. Lovely presents lie beneath wrapped in artistic and colorful papers and ribbons. Beautiful Christmas music is playing in the background. I am hearing Nat Cole singing the ‘Christmas Song’ or maybe a choir singing ‘Joy To The World’. Our Nativity scene sits so sweetly and solemnly alongside the tree, you turn on the TV to your local news channel, and lo and behold you hear reports of the Christmas madness, The women who stabbed another to get that flat screen TV for a low cost, The man who pepper-sprayed his way through the line at Best Buy. And you thinking… Yikes.

A few years ago, a Wal-Mart worker was killed in a stampede on a treacherous day after Thanksgiving. As the management prepared to open the store doors at 5 a.m., the employee was pushed to the ground and then trampled to death as shoppers surged through the entrance to get to the deals. Dozens of people are injured each year by the crazed crowds who are too eager to get popular items. Common injuries include bruises, sprained ankles, broken bones, and sometimes even concussions. The government has passed regulations for improved Black Friday safety, such as starting the line farther from the door and removing items that can be used as battering rams, but the unruly crowds and often-freezing temperatures seem like enough reason to call off the holiday altogether. Every year on Black Friday the race to the bargain deals are never-ending, and sometimes can get way out of hand,  According to Black Friday Death Count, there was 10 deaths and 111 injuries in the 2017 Black Friday. How far are you willing to go to get the deals?

“Crowded stores and long lines can turn the calmest people into terrifying lunatics. Throw in the scramble for a good deal, and any store can turn into a mob scene or break out into fights. This kind of rage can happen at any point during the year, but it increases around the holidays when shoppers are particularly stressed and stores are especially crowded.” Says Business Insurance, and I couldn’t agree more.

Each year Black Friday get increasingly more chaotic and out-of-hand. Black Friday has officially evolved from a one-day affair. A lot of stores start offering the deals during the week leading up to Thanksgiving. Wouldn’t you want to shop in peace instead of in absurdity?

And how much you want to bet that those exact same deals your finding in the stores are online, you can literally shop in your PJs in the nice safe environment of your home.

So to wrap this all up, Black Friday shoppers are ruthless. If you’re in their way, prepare to be pepper-sprayed or even worse. Happy Holidays.