Thumbs Down On 'Black Friday'

Customers rush into a Wal-Mart store in Renton, Wash., as the store opens early Friday morning, Nov. 25. Bargain shoppers woke up before dawn Friday to snap up specials on items from cashmere sweaters to flat-screen TVs and digital music players as the holiday shopping season officially got under. way.
This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.
It's the day after Thanksgiving — a shopper's holiday. But, please can we find another name for Black Friday? I know it's a hopeful reference for the black ink store owners want to be using after all that cash flows into their coffers but, Black Friday sounds more bleak than celebratory. Black Friday feels foreboding doesn't it? Does any store actually welcome customers to its Black Friday sale?

I checked some papers this morning. In all the ads, Black Friday isn't mentioned once.

My sister loves this day. She plots out her shopping mission with meticulous care. She has goals, objectives and strategies. She's armed with credit cards and coupons. She will have researched the mere sales and the serious markdowns. Come to think of it, my sister — like the millions of others who are in the stores today — aren't just shopping, they are on a mission. To them it's war. What price victory? No less than 40 percent off.

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on manyCBS Radio News affiliates across the country.

By Harry Smith