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Why so many Turks took Black Friday as insult to Islam

It may have looked silly when thousands of Turks took to Twitter to condemn Black Friday sales, but their frenzy tells an ominous story.
People gather at the Broadway entrance of Macy's Herald Square store ahead of early opening for the Black Friday sales in Manhattan, New York, U.S. November 23, 2017.  REUTERS/Andrew Kelly - RC1C2A925EB0
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Millions of Americans rushed to stores all across the United States Nov. 24 to take advantage of Black Friday, the day when most retailers offer promotional sales. Back in Turkey, some major department stores in big cities tried to emulate this foreign tradition, declaring major sales for “Kara Cuma,” as Black Friday translates in Turkish. In return, however, they received an unexpected tsunami of condemnations for insulting Islam. To many Turks, the term sounded like a rude term for Friday, Islam’s holy day.

The storm began with the hashtag #KaraCuma. “Friday is blessed. Black is only the color of those whose hearts are deprived of its sacred light,” wrote one angry Twitter user, condemning the “heretics” who brought the term into use in Turkey. Another declared, “The crusader mentality that calls Islam’s holiest day #BlackFriday is apparently filled with fear. But fear will not save them.” Then he quoted the Quran: “God will perfect his light even if the unbelievers dislike it.”

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