They sprint, to Walmart twice a week to buy cheap, import goods that were once regional, quality products sold at your local grocery store by owners you knew. Look on the back of your "Support Our Troops" magnetic decal you slapped on the back of your SUV, powered by gasoline from oil drilled in Saudi Arabia, guess where that decal was made? Probably China, Bangladesh or Pakistan. All countries who have little use for us other than to take our money, certainly not our friends. Yet, we keep funneling money to them to keep providing us gas, TVs, DVDs, Barbie dolls and millions of other items made for pennies.
I guess what I'm trying to get at here is the inconsistency of people who wave the flag and claim to be oh so patriotic, yet make little or no effort to support the American worker. We can blame the chain stores of America for pushing the small shops out of business but the fact of the matter is it goes back to supply and demand. If we refuse to buy from them, then they have no choice but to either change their policies and business model or go out of business. Companies like Walmart provide goods that are sometimes much cheaper than your mom and pop local grocery but at what cost to your neighborhood? There are reasons cities like San Francisco or New York will not allow a Walmart in their area, it's because it destroys nearly everything in it's vicinity.
The other thing we should ask ourselves, do we really need a new TV or a new car? Is what we are about to buy necessary and does it really make our lives better. We're a society that has become accustomed to buying the newest gadget and trying to get it at the lowest price when in fact, maybe we should pull back and think about if we actually need it. Does it give meaning to your life or are we buying it just because everyone else has it?
This year, on Black Friday, I'm suggesting that we spend absolutely no money at any of the big box stores. If we buy anything, buy it from a local merchant, spend money with someone you know. Go to a flea market, an antique store, a local fishing tackle store and make your purchases there. That is being patriotic.