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Walmart complaints aren't applicable

March 24, 2012

There is a lawn sign in my neighborhood that says: “Burbank: Stop Walmart, Live Better.”

Of course, there has been zero explanation of why we in West Burbank, or any part of the city, would be worse off if Walmart opens in that big, vacant store in an established shopping center located in an industrial/commercial section of town.

The hype against Walmart is based upon old complaints in other parts of the country that just aren't applicable here, or upon labor union frustrations about not being able to collect more dues.

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Most mom-and-pop businesses in Burbank closed years ago. If wages and benefits are too low, don't apply there for a job; but don't refer to those who will stand in line to get them as “slaves,” as one writer did.

My wife and I probably won't shop there, and won't be in that line, but I have a tough time justifying objections to a popular, legitimate business increasing the tax base of this city through bringing lower-priced merchandise. As a business, Walmart has not only enriched the founding Walton family — is there some jealousy about your dad not thinking of the idea? — but may have benefited a lot of us through dividends and stock value gains in the mutual funds in our retirement plans.

So welcome a major improvement to that end of the Empire Center and get on with your life.

Mel Wolf

Burbank

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