Careful when you wish for Wal-Mart

Reader Input
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In reply to Jason Williams (Reader Input, July 18), it is not stupid to want tax revenues and jobs, but be careful what you wish for. Studies have shown that Wal-Mart reduces the number of retail employees in a community. Wal-Mart’s average employee annually earns less than the national poverty level. Benefits are reduced by maximizing the use of part-time workers. In 21 states, Wal-Mart leads all employers in the percentage of employees who require public assistance, adding billions of dollars to our taxes. Wal-Mart consciously avoids paying its fair share of state and local taxes through a variety of loopholes. Wal-Mart’s endless price pressure on suppliers has driven many American companies (e.g. Rubbermaid) to the ground, leaving Wal-Mart as the largest American importer of Chinese goods. Nationwide, Wal-Mart has an abysmal record of discrimination and violation of labor laws. Wal-Mart abandoned over 900 store sites, leaving blight and crime in their wake. The pennies saved by shopping at Wal-Mart do not justify the hidden costs of taxation, loss of employment and income, the profits flowing to Arkansas, the extinction of local businesses, and the overall reduction of quality of the community’s life. Spend money. Live worse. Wal-Mart. Linda Martin, Auburn