I’ve been celebrating Buy Nothing Day for years. This year, I’m even more encouraged to celebrate, because Buy Nothing Day falls on November 25th, my birthday. Buy Nothing Day was originally launched by the folks at Adbusters, and it’s pretty simple to participate. Buy Nothing Day encourages people to skip the Black Friday madness and choose other, better alternative activities instead.
Below is the awesome Buy Nothing Day video – it was made back in 2005, but it’s still relevant. By the way, when it first appeared, many media networks like MTV and ABC banned this commercial, deeming it too hard-core for American consumers. Lame.
Most people know about Black Friday. It happens every year, the Friday after Thanksgiving. Stores hold massive sales and people head out in droves to shop. There are some huge issues with a holiday that celebrates massive consumerism though, such as…
- Black Friday is a huge time waster. You could spend the day with your family instead of spending it in a stressful, crowded store check-out line. It’s a holiday weekend for pete’s sake, don’t you have better stuff to do?
- Black Friday encourages the gigantic “Buy more, buy bigger” mindset that’s already in place in this country.
- Black Friday is not eco-friendly, because it’s a day focused on buying as much stuff as possible – not healthy for people or the earth. Plus, most retailers who participate in the Black Friday shenanigans don’t carry safe, green, non-toxic products, and because it occurs all on one day, you don’t have time to research before you buy.
- Black Friday sets a terrible example for your kids. Kids are bombarded with consumer issues every single day. The last thing kids need is a holiday telling them how cool it is to buy, buy, buy.
- Black Friday doesn’t help you make smart consumer choices because it happens so quickly. There’s no time to think through purchases. You have to buy right now.
- Black Friday make people do incredibly greedy, money-minded and lame things. Seriously – read this.
- Black Friday is not peaceful. No argument on earth will convince me that consumerism, mixed with long lines, mixed with stress, mixed with fighting over products and other nonsense connected with Black Friday is a healthy way to live. A peaceful living mindset is tied intrinsically to eco-living. When you buy less, live healthier and make positive choices, a certain sense of calm begins to take over your life , which can lead to a greener lifestyle as well. Less clutter, less competition, more peace, and more green.
People who are healthy and happy, and not stressed over stuff can stay more balanced and have more time to figure out how to invest in a greener world. You don’t have to shop, shop, shop on November 25th. You could make a statement by not shopping at all.
Instead of shopping, use Black Friday as a day to go on a hike, play board games, hold a gathering for friends you missed over Thanksgiving, or whatever you like. If you REALLY must participate, consider a buy something responsible day instead.