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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Pitt chapter.

Thanksgiving is fast approaching. The countdown is coming to only a few short days away. Everyone knows the scene – families gathered around the dining room table. An array of the traditional dishes lay in front of their faces. Your grandmother’s homemade mashed potatoes. The sweet potato casserole that seems to find its way on everyone’s plates. The bowl of gravy that gets handed around the table, and then in the center of it all – the turkey. However, even with all of the hours of preparation, family members begin to rush their eating. The best sale of the year is happening tonight, and Thanksgiving dinner is not going to ruin it. Is this what Thanksgiving has become? 

For years, I would watch as family members would sprint out the door once they finished their Thanksgiving meal, too caught up in the idea of catching the best sales before the night was over. Stores opening up at 7 or 8 p.m on Thanksgiving night meant our Thanksgiving feast was cut short, overlooked by material things. What happened to spending time with family? What happened to being thankful? Thanksgiving is a holiday meant to be spent with family. A night where you can see those you love and cherish the night you have together. For me, Thanksgiving this year is seeing my grandparents for the first time in months after being away. Thanksgiving is the time where I can spend the whole night with my family, who I haven’t seen in weeks. It’s the time where family comes together, yet for years, stores have torn families apart. 

All stores should be closed on Thanksgiving, including Thanksgiving night, and especially this year. Many stores like Target, Walmart, Best Buy and Macy’s have already announced that they will be closed on Thanksgiving, which gives a promising hope that other stores will follow suit. Thanksgiving is a holiday meant to be spent with family, and being thankful to be able to spend time with the ones we hold so close, and retail workers should be given the same opportunity. The Covid-19 pandemic is still ongoing, and everyone, including retail workers, deserve to spend the holiday in the comfort of their homes. Enough of being bombarded with cracked shoppers scouring down the aisles looking for the perfect gift, a whole month before Christmas. Enough of putting families above one another. Enough of letting a holiday be overshadowed by material things. Let Thanksgiving be Thanksgiving, a holiday where we can all come together and spend time with friends, family and loved ones. All that stress of long lines, elbows to the chest and fighting over the best deal out there can wait till Black Friday.

If you or someone you know is a retail worker, I hope you can find your Thanksgiving free of any shopping drama, and enjoy your Thanksgiving feast at home. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Serena is a Junior at the University of Pittsburgh who is majoring in English Writing with minors in Creative Writing and Legal Studies. When she's not writing short stories for class, Serena loves to write for HC Pitt, listen to music, and watch Jersey Shore!