Letters to the Editor

Big business: Wal-Mart's impact mostly positive

It truly interests me that someone can read a book that is negative against any company and not wonder if there couldn't possibly be some positives hidden somewhere! Let's talk about Wal-Mart and Oak Harbor:

1: I would surmise that what Ms. Burton states (Letters, Nov. 6) about jobs being "low paying and part-time" is true. She also says that “perhaps” 60 to 70 percent of employees do not receive health care and employees are subject to work shortage or lay-off due to poor sales. I also say “perhaps.” However, how many other companies in the United States of America fit the above description? Has she considered that Wal-Mart employs the retired and the disabled and many companies will not? Could it be possible that people who have children in school only want to work part-time?

2: If Wal-Mart transfers the money it makes to their corporate office is that so unusual? Maybe the banks should consider giving them perks to tempt them to leave it here. I wonder what Albertsons and Safeway do with their money? Do we forget that people used to take some of their town money into Mount Vernon and Burlington where they could buy from Wal-Mart, Fred Meyer, Costco, Target, etc., etc. Talking about Wal-Mart's money — how much charitable monies are left in our town? So soon we forget!

3: I'm like you Ms. Burton, I don't think too many businesses were closed when Wal-Mart opened. Did we ever think that there might be some businesses that opened in Oak Harbor because of Wal-Mart?

4: Loss of jobs? Since Wal-Mart employs, in Oak Harbor, approximately 500 employees and since I don't think there were 500 jobs lost when Wal-Mart opened I would have to disagree with you. As I mentioned earlier, I think Wal-Mart has employed people that very few others would have considered!

I don't know anything about Buy American. For example, how much Wal-Mart purchases out of the country compared to others; so I will not comment.

I am proud that the Navy is part of our community. I am proud that we are making their lives a little easier and a little less expensive by supporting Wal-Mart and Kmart in our neighborhood.

I would also love to hear from members of the Oak Harbor Chamber of Commerce and city officials to commend them for being the only officials on Whidbey Island to be intelligent enough to take a step forward!

I am not affiliated with Wal-Mart nor do I know anyone who is employed there. I am simply retired and sick and tired of always hearing the nays and never the yeahs.

Linda Keys

Oak Harbor

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