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Wal-Mart cheapens a community

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The “big box” problem isn’t going away, it’s getting worse. Ideally, Auburn would benefit from J.C. Penney going in where Gottschalks used to be, and the space where Wal-Mart is going to be would benefit from Trader Joe’s. These are normal businesses that add quality and variety to a community. In contrast, something like Wal-Mart just cheapens a community. I will never shop there, nor will I ever shop at a Wal-Mart. I don’t agree with what they stand for. I don’t like the way they squeeze their suppliers and force them into providing product at slave-labor wages, nor do I like the way they treat their employees, all for the enrichment of the family that owns this corporation. And make no mistake. They absolutely do not care about the “little guy,” except to get his business. A store like Costco would be a mixed blessing. I like Costco and shop there, but it would change the flavor and character of this community. Wal-Mart will really change it. If Auburn gets one here, that’s the end of Auburn as we know it. Wal-Mart will forever convert Auburn from a unique place to live to just another milestone of corporate America. If you miss Wal-Mart so much, move off the hill. Tony Hallas, Foresthill