Wikipedia lists no less than almost a dozen tragic and violent "Black Friday" events in history. Many of these are protests or riots over noble ideas that sadly ended in lives lost. But this time of year, Black Friday becomes a popular term in reference to crazy markdowns at stores the day after Thanksgiving - and the crazy behavior it inspires.
Last year, Wal-mart and several other retailers opened around 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, continuing a trend of opening earlier and earlier each year. In 2011, many retailers opened at midnight, and before that Black Friday sales started in the wee hours of Friday morning, allowing employees to celebrate Thanksgiving.
Is this push to spread out the craziness, or is it a greedy push to get more shoppers into their own store? Either way, it is prompting a great deal of backlash from retail employees.