ER Editor: Living in France sometimes makes you want to facepalm yourself so very very hard, and this is one of those occasions. Given the Gilets Jaunes’ crisis and the general impoverishment of ordinary French people, you’d imagine that, with less than 4 weeks to Christmas, any economic respite would be welcome. Shops were discounting their prices today by 30% and 40%; stores were relatively busy even though people were working, and good deals were to be had on Christmas gifts and regular purchases. But no, the Great and Good of France (mostly the Left) are complaining about it, as if people are stupid kids who can’t be trusted, and who are never ever considered in a benevolent way. Environmentalist arguments are a perfectly ridiculous justification for this proposed ban of Black Friday.
We also recommend this Telegraph article, titled Black Friday is bad for the planet and should be banned, say French MPs. Of note:
The trade council of France, a trade umbrella group, said it “regretted” her comments.
“Using the word frenzy gives the impression that consumers are not committed and responsible citizens,” it said.
After suffering a drop in business due to months of crippling “yellow vest” protests, the government “should rejoice rather than deplore (Black Friday) as everything that kick starts and maintains consumption is good for commerce and thus for the French economy,” it said.
Conservative MP Eric Woerth, president of French parliament’s finance commission, denounced what he called a “useless row” sparked by Ms Borne’s comments.
“Next they’ll say that Mother’s Day isn’t on because it’s a frightful commercial fete and then they’ll target Christmas,” he said.
“What right does she have to meddle in our lives? People have the right to launch advertising campaigns to consume and people have the right to consume, as long as it’s responsible consumption,” he said.
French MPs Want To Ban Black Friday Because Of “Resource Waste” And “Overconsumption”
Members of the French Parliament are now demanding the government prohibit Black Friday, reported The Independent.
French MPs passed an amendment Monday that could make the annual shopping holiday, widely popularized in the US, illegal, warning that a shopping frenzy causes “resources waste” and “overconsumption.”
The proposal, led by France’s former environment minister Delphine Batho, is expected to be debated next month in the National Assembly, the lower house of parliament.
France’s ecological transition minister, Elisabeth Borne, told Europe 1 radio on Thursday that Black Friday creates “traffic jams, pollution, and gas emissions.”
“We cannot both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and call for a consumer frenzy,” Borne said. “Above all, we must consume better.”
The amendment prohibiting Black Friday has been condemned by France’s e-commerce union.
RetailMeNot estimates that French shoppers are expected to spend $6.5 billion this year between Black Friday and Dec. 1.
Climate change activists from the Extinction Rebellion group’s French chapter have been out in force protesting shoppers.
“Friday, Nov. 29, it’s Block Friday: a day when Extinction Rebellion joins the youth call for the climate,” the climate change group said on Facebook. “Together, we stand to occupy in a festive way or block ‘Temples’ of consumption in more than 20 cities in France.”
Extinction Rebellion also said Black Friday is “a symbol of the most harmful capitalism” and warned that “consumerism will end up / destroy everything if we don’t act before.”
“One word of order: prevent them from making a profit on what does not belong to them: the living,” the post added.
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