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DC ‘Wal-Mart Would Encourage Stealing’

This is a story from last week, but the news from Egypt got it crowded out. From a surprisingly pro-Wal-Mart sounding Washington Post:

Wal-Mart’s arrival in District looks like welcome advance for shopping, jobs

Thursday, February 10, 2011; B01

When politicians, agency officials and other establishment types discuss the pros and cons of Wal-Mart opening stores in poor, retail-starved neighborhoods in the District, they often talk about pretty high-minded stuff. Fair pay. Job training. Environmental safeguards.

By contrast, in the scruffy blocks around the corner of New York Avenue and Bladensburg Road in Northeast Washington, where the first of four Wal-Marts planned for the District would probably be built, the residents have more immediate, street-level concerns.

First, would a new Wal-Mart there really stock the same quality of food and products as its stores do in better-off, suburban communities?

"I’ll believe it when I see it," Mya Harris, 24, said skeptically. "Sure, you can put the store here, but what are they going to put inside it?"

So Wal-Marts carry completely different inventories for stores in scruffier neighborhoods? Who knew?

Second, and I was amazed when this anxiety was aired in fully half the interviews, residents worry that the store would suffer severely or even fail because of petty theft.

"There’ll probably be a lot of shoplifting going on. They’ll need a lot of security," Terriea Sutton, 35, said.

Brenda Speaks, a Ward 4 ANC commissioner, actually urged blocking construction of the planned store in her ward at Georgia and Missouri avenues NW partly because of that risk. Addressing a small, anti-Wal-Mart rally at City Hall on Monday, Speaks said young people would get criminal records when they couldn’t resist the temptation to steal.

We realize that the unions are getting pretty desperate in the excuses for keeping Wal-Mart out of DC. Even to the point of passing out fliers with Wal-Mart in the ‘crosshairs.’ But this argument really shoplifts the cake – so to speak. And it is from a city official.

In fact, don’t we usually hear the exact opposite from elected officials? Don’t they claim that they are being discriminated against by the stores which refuse to go into the rougher parts of town?

Wal-Mart said District residents needn’t be so self-critical. Although security is "always a concern and a focal point for all stores, there is no more concern over these District locations than any other store locations," company spokesman Steven Restivo said.

It’s sad that people have such a low opinion of their own community. Happily, with prudent oversight from the city, Wal-Mart’s arrival should be a significant step forward for the neighborhood and the District as a whole.

Again, what a surprising admission to hear from the Washington Post. But really, shouldn’t the locals be ecstatic and grateful that Wal-Mart is willing to take such a risk?

If all four stores open, Wal-Mart says it would create up to 1,200 permanent jobs in the District. That would be a big help for neighborhoods where the percentage of unemployed people is in the teens or higher

Well, we certainly can’t have that. Not if they are non-union jobs. It’s much better to starve get money from the government.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, February 15th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

5 Responses to “DC ‘Wal-Mart Would Encourage Stealing’”

  1. NoNeoCommies says:

    It is a good thing our police state got rid of all the guns in DC.
    That target will almost certainly incite violence.

  2. DANEgerus says:

    By that logic don’t rape victims ask for it? Isn’t the way to prevent murder to just insist people take some responsibility and quite allowing themselves to be killed?

    How racist is Brenda Speaks? So “they” shouldn’t build the store and bring value to enhance the low income AFRICAN-AMERICAN families circumstances because that “demographic” just won’t be able to resist the urge to steal… and that would be WalMart’s fault?

    • Liberals Demise says:

      Problem solved……..have the Afro (hyphen) Americans stay
      home and Wal-Mart can send them a check every two weeks.
      Saving money on extra security, theft, building the stores and
      maintenance far outweighs Black Friday violence for scarce HDTV’s
      and I-Pods.
      Plus you’ll get a nod from the Plantation owner (Doink the Clown)
      for wealth distribution. I mean ….. why bother?

  3. Mae says:

    Years of brainwashing have taken their toll. The capitol of our nation is obviously a great mix of the extreme haves and the extreme have-nots, both of which live off the government. The fear of some that WalMart would not stock new/first rate produce and other products is a fear I’ve heard for 50 years–the discriminatory and evil practices of the shop-owner to palm off spoiled and third-rate goods onto a suffering and captive audience. VICTIM!! Times don’t change for those whose boot-straps have not had good pull in decades.

  4. BillK says:

    Let’s be fair here, Steve.

    Wal-Mart, like Target and really grocery chains nationwide adjusts product mix for the store location.

    So for example, a Wal-Mart located in a higher-end area is more likely to carry say, Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil where one located in a more run-down area will not.

    Food-wise, a Wal-Mart in a higher end area may be more likely to carry more expensive cuts of meat, live lobster and the like.

    They’re not just going to stock Cheetos. :-)


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