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Yoga Korunta

Life & Politics

Location: United States

One learns, as nothing endures but change.

24 November 2006

Black Friday

Buy Nothing Day

Buy Nothing Day is an informal day of protest against consumerism observed by social activists. It was founded by Vancouver artist Ted Dave and subsequently promoted by the Canadian Adbusters magazine. Participants refrain from purchasing anything for 24 hours in a concentrated display of consumer power. The event is intended to raise awareness of what some see as the wasteful consumption habits of First World countries. Activists may also participate in culture jamming activities like the Whirl-Mart and other forms of radical expression. It is also used to protest materialism and bandwagon appeals.

In the United States and Canada, supporters demonstrate on the day after American Thanksgiving. This day, often called "Black Friday," is one of the busiest shopping days of the year (although this is not so in Canada, the date remains there to synchronize events). In other countries the demonstrations occur a day later.

Since "Buy Nothing Day" occurs the day after American Thanksgiving, and the meaning of Buy Nothing Day is to resist mindless consumerism, some people have viewed Buy Nothing Day as an opportunity to expose the "hypocrisy" of the Thanksgiving weekend. Since Thanksgiving has always had an emphasis on friends, family and community, while the day after Thanksgiving has more recently had an emphasis on consumerism and shopping, "Buy Nothing Day" may be seen by some protesters as a way of reclaiming the 'original meaning' of Thanksgiving: encouraging friends and family to socialize instead of encouraging individual income-earners to spend their money.

Critics of "Buy Nothing Day" point out that consumers would simply buy more the next day instead, rendering their protest pointless. However, participants argue that this misses the point of the event which is to make people aware of their buying habits and their global impacts.
This blog supports responsible living, not consumerism and conspicuous consumption.




Blogger pissed off patricia said...

This whole shopping thing is insane. People literally fighting one another for stuff they really don't need but feel they must buy because "the price is right". I guess I protested black friday without even knowing it.

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

It's good to know another blogger supports Buy Nothing Day. I once saw an article about a local bicycle shop announcing a "Big Sale" for Christmas. It was published in September.

Blogger barbie2be said...

i did spend some money on black friday but it wasn't for christmas stuff. i stopped at casa de fruta on my way home from the central valley and bought some fruits, vegetables and a latte. :)

i have a good friend that routinely asks her family and friends not to purchase gifts for her. every year she picks out two or three charities that she wants to support and she asks that if someone wants to do something for her, that they make a donation to one of her charities in her name. i think that is a great idea.

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

'K Barbie, so long as you're not one of the dreaded Holiday Shoppers!

Your friend has a generous idea.

Thanks for reading, Patricia and Barbie!

Blogger Crabbi said...

I bought coffee and tomatoes, but I did stay away from the malls. Shudder!

Happy Holidays, YK!

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

Thanks, Crabbi!

A pox on the malls. Survival food isn't holiday shopping!

Blogger barbie2be said...

i try to stay away from the malls all the time, just on general principal.

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

The roads are so slow for all those shoppers, too! BTW, I used to work in retail--please believe me when I say it's no holiday tolerating those "adults."

Blogger Mary said...

I am behind I'm my reading but I definitely participate in this event. I read an article in the paper regarding the deaths on black friday to my children in hopes that they will see the ugliness of this gimme, get, gotta have.

Blogger Yoga Korunta said...

Yes, I agree, Mary. The central idea of gift giving seems to have degenerated into the mindset of consumerism. Thanks for reading!


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