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Black Friday protests show Occupy movement's lack of unity or purpose

By Victoria Neely, Columnist

On November 25, shoppers all over the country headed out to grab great deals on Black Friday. Along with the shoppers, some Occupy Wall Street protesters mobilized into what they called "Occupy Black Friday." They paraded into malls, shopping centers and stores protesting against big businesses, and told shoppers to join them in their crusade in buying from local businesses rather than large corporations.

The Occupy protests have been referred to as a "movement," but don't movements usually have a solid purpose?

What these protesters overlook that while they "Occupy" the shopping locations on Black Friday, there are people inside those stores working hard for their money. These big businesses they are protesting against provide thousands of jobs to working people.

The Occupy movement has undoubtedly expanded, but is motivated by various goals without any clear purpose, leader or idea. What the Occupy movement has done, besides annoy shoppers on a shopping holiday and boycott businesses that provide jobs, is cost millions of extra tax dollars all over the United States. The need for more police force in various cities, along with damages to public places, has called for unnecessary expenditures.

Yes, "Occupiers," we understand you want us to buy from local businesses. However, in these present conditions, urging shoppers to stop shopping at large businesses is unrealistic.

In the present U.S. economic condition, there are many people who are discontent with their conditions. However, occupying a Macy's or Wal-Mart will accomplish next to nothing.

Aside from Black Friday, there are rumors of potential Occupy Christmas protests. These protests are also said to focus on purchasing from smaller businesses in order to hurt corporations and the pockets of the "one percent."

These protesters seem to have forgotten that a lot of the seasonal jobs that open up around Christmas time are, indeed, provided by large businesses.

The economic turmoil the United States is in cannot be fully blamed on large corporations. It is arguable that there is a need for vast reforms in the area of corporation laws, but "Occupying" a toy store will not get the message across. After the unsuccessful Occupy Black Friday episodes, why would anyone assume that Occupying Christmas shoppers will make any difference?

In order for these Occupy protesters to make a solid difference in the holiday consumerist frenzy, there must be a clear purpose and a unity to their protests. A leaderless movement, however, has little or no chance of making a mark on consumer attitudes all over the country. This movement has cost the United States more than it has benefitted it.


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