Okay, Cal... that guy's wrong too.
Cal Thomas writes today that it's unfair that liberal bloggers have been so hard on Virginia Senator George Allen for referring to his an Indian-American worker for a rival campaign as a "Macaca," which is a racist term that Europeans use to call people monkeys. Thomas downplays Allen's comments by removing all of the content, by the way, (he also told the young worker, "Welcome to America."
Thomas then spins to the story of Andrew Young, head of "Working Families For Wal-Mart," who said that the mom and pop stores that Wal-Mart closes down tend to rip off their customers by selling them overpriced goods, bad meats, and wilted vegetables. Young went on to say that the owners of such stores have tended to be Jewish, Korean or Arab and that they "sold out and moved to Florida." Okay, Thomas is right that Young was out of line.
But, if you put the racial stuff aside, something seemed familiar to me about Young's argument -- the notion that the "Mom and Pop" stores basically overcharge captive communities is one that has its origins at Wal-Mart. The group, "Working Families for Wal-Mart," is Wal-Mart supported. Young has since resigned his post, but had he not included the racial comments, he likely would have been fine. One of Wal-Mart's arguments in favor of itself, after all, is that the big box retailers are good for communities because they bring prices down to levels that a myriad of smaller stores just can't match.
Thomas wants to focus on the racial part. But, just as he took George Allen's comment out of context in order to minimize it, he's taken Young's comment out of context in order to ignore the fact that it's just an example of old-hat Wal-Mart propaganda that probably says less about racism than it does about what happens when a civil rights activist takes a job as a corporate shill.
*Sorry for no links, am traveling.*