Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Holidays meant for family time, not shopping

Finally, a holiday trend that needs to catch on.

Different stores across the country — both local mom-and-pops and national chains — are deciding their employees should stay home on Thanksgiving Day to enjoy family time. Instead of joining the open-for-Christmas-and-let’s-all-start-shopping trend, businesses are beginning to say no to the madness.

Black Friday, of course, is the legendary shopping day after Thanksgiving that has been the retail bliss center for decades.

People line up in the pre-dawn hours for the doors to open, eager to grab up bargains and get their Christmas shopping done.

Stores lure them in, knowing that once the cheap TVs or computers are gone, persistent shoppers will keep on spending.

But 6 a.m. Friday wasn’t early enough for the retail overlords. They wanted folks in the stores earlier and earlier. There was 4 a.m., then midnight, and finally 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day proper. (Kmart went so far as to open at 6 a.m. on Thanksgiving for 41 hours straight of shopping.)

With openings on Thanksgiving Day, families barely have time to eat and wash dishes before hitting the stores.

Of course, most impacted by retail madness are the millions of employees who must give up family time to work on a day when all of the United States — except for essential services only — should be counting their blessings with loved ones.

Now, such chains as Costco, Dillard’s and Nordstrom are saying no to opening on Thanksgiving. We hope more stores stay firm and keep to holiday traditions past. After all, on Thanksgiving Day, there is football to watch — and if you aren’t fond of watching sports, there is nothing like a feast and then a game of touch football or a hike through the woods to burn off a few calories before leftovers are devoured.

During Thanksgiving and the holidays, find time to count blessings, enjoy friends and relatives. Slow down. Shopping has its place, and most of us love our presents come Christmas Day — but surely, on one day a year, we can enjoy each other’s company without spending a dime.

— The Santa Fe New Mexican