Wal-Mart is starting Black Friday 2012 early this year, welcoming customers to their heavily discounted aisles at 8 p.m. on Thursday. Because if Black Friday violence is going to be their Thanksgiving tradition, they might as well make it happen on the actual holiday, amirite? But really, rolling back Black Friday deals could pretty much ruin the holiday with drunk driving and Blu-Ray fights.
In a statement today, Wal-Mart explained how they’re going to make this the best gosh-darned Black Friday consumers have ever seen:
In addition to offering amazing low prices on the season’s top gifts, Walmart is taking the historic step to ensure wishlist items like the Apple iPad2 are available for customers during a special one-hour event on Thanksgiving.
We know it’s frustrating for customers to shop on Black Friday and not get the items they want.
This year, for the first time ever, customers that shop during Walmart’s one-hour event will be guaranteed to have three of the most popular items under their tree at a great low price.
These items include the Apple iPad 2, an Emerson LCD TV, and an LG Blu-ray Player, which the company says they’ll guarantee to any customers who either find it in the store, or pick up a card for the item which has to be paid for by midnight and registered online.
The thought of families speeding through their meals to rush out and shop is sad enough, but seriously, guys: Black Friday 2012 could be a legitimate threat to consumers’ well-being. If history teaches us anything, the stores have a good chance of hosting break-out fights between turkey-stuffed customers battling for discounted items. (In 2008, a stampede killed a temp employee and hospitalized a pregnant woman; last year, injuries, fights and shootings broke out across the country.) Add post-meal drunkenness to the mix, and emergency rooms could get seriously busy. (With brawling shoppers and drunk drivers.)
Unfortunately, Wal-Mart isn’t the only retailer aiming to steal A Christmas Story‘s thunder: Sears and Kmart are already planning to follow suit, opening during the day and/or evening on Thanksgiving, and Macy’s Kohl’s and Best Buy are opening at midnight. We just hope that if you’re going to take advantage of the deals, you plan an early dinner (because seriously, it’s so sad to rush through dinner with friends and family for cheap vacuums and video games) and get yourself a designated driver. But really, we just hope you refuse to spend your holiday at a store.
Photo: from this video