Six Degrees of Separation

Way to go, NAFTA

U.S. Border Watch has organized a rally this Saturday in response to Labor Day marches by pro-immigrant groups, and you can expect plenty of hooting and hollering about all the bad stuff those damn Mexicans are bringing into this here country.

We don't necessarily want to throw more gasolina on the fire, but we do have a new target for the anti-immigrant shouters: Wal-Mart.

According to today's Wall Street Journal, the mega-retailer is dropping its one-size-fits-all approach and customizing each store to fit one of six demographic groups: African-Americans, the affluent, empty-nesters, Hispanics, suburbanites and rural folk.

Seems like a good idea to us, unless you don't fit into one of those groups.

But guess where this idea came from?

Mexico.

You heard that right: Mexico.

Wal-Mart, the most American of companies (you know, if you don't bother to read the "Made in China" labels), is following the lead of its Mexican division in offering different options for different communities.

A store in Plano, for example, sells organic food, expensive wines and home-exercise equipment, while centers in African-American communities offer more baggy jeans, sports jackets and hip-hop CDs.

We're all for a little individuality when it comes to our force-fed consumption, but we do have to wonder whether this switch will affect Wally World's low, low prices.

But we're sure they'll think of something. — Keith Plocek


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