Thursday, May 29, 2008

A Workplace That Works...?

Dear readers,

I seem to have hit a point in my life where my values must be compromised, and I do indeed feel as though I am selling out. My father told me: "It's not as if you are prostituting yourself," but honestly I feel as though I am. Why do I feel this way? Two words [well, one word that is two hyphenated words]: Wal-Mart.

That's correct, I have become an employee of an establishment that I often rail against, and honestly I feel bad about it [the whole becoming the employee part, not the railing]. The whole irony of the situation, and guilty feeling that came with it, didn't hit me until my orientation when the co-manager said: "Now we'll watch a video that offers an argument against all of the anti-Wal-Mart people out there," and I realized - I am one of those people.

And I wonder, at what point can we draw the line between our values and our need to subsist? Wal-Mart is the only place that called me back for a job offer, and I need the money. This mostly comes from the fact that I live in a small town, where jobs are scarce, especially with the economy the way it is. This also leads to the fact that I have to shop at Wal-Mart to buy things I need unless I want to drive to Columbia to buy something, and that's a far way away.

The fact of the matter is, to be anti-big business in a small town, or really in general, requires a lot of money. Funny how that works. Unless you are willing to completely go "off the grid," so to speak, it is next to impossible to do everything with independently owned stores and organic foods. All-in-all: It's not cheap to be an activist...

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