Maybe five to seven years ago the hot November debate seemed to be if corporate America had gone too far opening stores on Thanksgiving. Forcing workers to come in and not be with their families was, to some, an Ebenezer Scrooge move. To others, it was supply and demand and a free market.

Looking at a list of what's open and what's closed on Thanksgiving this year I'm seeing more closed than open. I wonder if the pandemic that had us all buying our goods delivered through places like Amazon took us even more away from brick-and-mortar stores at the holidays than we were already getting and if that's playing into it.

Nonetheless, for stores that choose to open on Thanksgiving, it’s up to them. You can’t believe in capitalism and a free market and then get emotional and complain that the company wasn’t touchy-feely enough come the holidays.

If there are customers willing to show up on Thanksgiving for deals, that’s called demand. Who are the rest of us to whine about supply meeting that demand? Do those who think it’s so terrible and an abuse of employees really believe companies would open if customers were not there?

Girls with gifts standing in front of shopping windows

Now as far as Black Friday shopping madness or even hitting the stores on Thanksgiving Day, it’s just not for me. Only once in my life did I go to a mall on the day after Thanksgiving. It was the Menlo Park Mall and I went with my mom for an all-day shopping excursion. This was back when I suspect it was a much bigger thing. You didn’t have Amazon. You didn’t have online shopping at all.

You also didn’t have your sanity by the end of the trip. I’ve been in crowded rock concerts and felt less claustrophobic.

But I don’t have to like it. If someone else likes it they are, as economist Milton Friedman would say, free to choose. So are privately owned companies in the United States. So let’s stop dressing them down with the Scrooge lectures.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.

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