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D'oh - WalMart rep - open mouth, insert foot...

Discussion in 'Chit-Chat' started by wob, Aug 19, 2006.

  1. wob

    wob

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    http://www.iht.com/articles/2006/08/18/news/walmart.php

    Andrew Young, the American civil rights leader who was hired by Wal- Mart Stores to improve its public image, has resigned from that post after telling an African-American newspaper that Jewish, Arab and Korean shop owners had "ripped off" urban communities for years, "selling us stale bread, and bad meat and wilted vegetables."

    In the interview, published Thursday in The Los Angeles Sentinel, a weekly, Young said Wal-Mart should displace mom-and-pop stores in urban neighborhoods.

    "You see those are the people who have been overcharging us," he said of the owners of the small stores, "and they sold out and moved to Florida. I think they've ripped off our communities enough. First it was Jews, then it was Koreans and now it's Arabs."

    Young, 74, a former mayor of Atlanta and a former U.S. representative at the United Nations, apologized for the comments and retracted them in an interview late Thursday. Less than an hour later, he resigned as chairman of Working Families for Wal-Mart, a group created and financed by the company to trumpet its accomplishments.

    "It's against everything I ever thought in my life," Young said. "It never should have been said. I was speaking in the context of Atlanta, and that does not work in New York or Los Angeles."

    His remarks drew forceful condemnation from Arab, Jewish and Asian leaders.

    The national director of the Anti-Defamation League, Abraham Foxman, called the comments "very hurtful."

    "The sad part," he said, is that "even people of color and even minorities who suffered discrimination and prejudice are not immune from being bigoted and racist and even anti-Semitic."

    In the six months that Young was under contract with the Wal-Mart-financed group, he traveled the country promoting the retailer, meeting with community groups and writing opinion pieces for local newspapers.

    "I am more of a spokesman than the chairman of Wal-Mart," he remarked, referring to his work on behalf of the company.

    Wal-Mart executives moved quickly Thursday to distance themselves from Young's remarks. "Ambassador Young's comments do not reflect our feelings toward the Jewish, Asian or Arab communities or any other diverse group," said a company spokeswoman, Mona Williams.

    "Needless to say, we were appalled when the comments came to our attention," Williams said. "We were also dismayed that they would come from someone who has worked so hard for so many years for equal rights in this country. Ambassador Young has done the right thing to apologize and to ask for a retraction. We also support his decision to resign."

    Margaret Fung, executive director of the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, said, "Andrew Young should know better than to resort to derogatory ethnic stereotypes about Korean store owners in black neighborhoods."

    Khaled Lamada, former president of the Arab Muslim American Federation and currently director of outreach for the Muslim American Society, said that Young's statements were "not fair" and that they "shame" the Muslim community.

    Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder and dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles, said, "These are stereotypical remarks that any leader of the civil rights movement should run away from rather than utter."

    Explaining his comments about Koreans, Jews and Arabs, Young said he was referring to the history of retail ownership in the neighborhood where he lives in southwestern Atlanta.

    "Almost everyone who has come into my community has moved in, made money and moved out and moved up," he said. "That process is still continuing."

    Over the last two years, Wal-Mart efforts to open stores in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York have been blocked by community opposition. Because of Young's background, Wal- Mart had looked to him to ease its entry into such cities.

    "The only thing I can do," Young said Thursday before he resigned, "is to ask that people judge me about a life of working together with people who are different and bringing people together without violence and without rancor. I would hope that would count for something."
     
  2. lingo

    lingo

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    He has always been a racist. I am not surprised.
     
  3. Cruisin'Carolina

    Cruisin'Carolina

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    I cannot believe they or any other corporate entity would hire or promote him to do anything with access to the press.
     
  4. White Shark

    White Shark

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    Fricken idiot. IH8prejudicedbastids...... :mad:
     
  5. Cruisin'Carolina

    Cruisin'Carolina

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    What is wrong with opening a neighborhood store, selling things at a price people will buy, and making a better life for yourself?

    Even if he didn't use racial terms, I can't imagine using the line that small owners OUGHT to be put out of business.....

    Of course, using what people hate about you as a strength is a popular PR tactic.
     
  6. cruiserdan

    cruiserdan SupportingVendor Emeritus Moderator

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    Lace up golf shoes.....


    un-zip fly....












    step on dick...............both feet............:doh:
     
  7. MoJ

    MoJ Moderator

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    Yay, wob brought the Heep Cherokee avatar back. I missed that dumbass.
     
  8. Russ in California

    Russ in California

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    Just consider the source.
    Besides, who seems to be the most racist group in America anyway? Dr. King would be ashamed.
    :cool:
     
  9. TJDIV

    TJDIV Back in The U.P.

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    He and that McKinney bitch from Georgia should adopt a little Russian kid and move to Kentucky.
     
  10. lingo

    lingo

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    Andrew Young = bigot

    Bill Cambell = going to prison for 30 months for tax evasion

    We can elect some real winners
     
  11. NorCalDoug

    NorCalDoug problems solved daily...

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    who?
     
  12. yooper

    yooper SILVER Star

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    :popcorn:
     
  13. re_guderian

    re_guderian SILVER Star

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    I've typed about 3 responses to this thread and then just delete them, since I don't think a single positive thing will come from them...

    :idea:
     
  14. Jman

    Jman

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  15. GetsUThere

    GetsUThere

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  16. Zimm

    Zimm

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    local mom and pops may charge more, but the profits STAY in the community. competition is good, it keeps gouging in check, improves services, etc. but when a large outside chain puts all the mom and pops out of business, and ships the profits 2000 miles away, the whole local economy implodes. the dude was selling out his own people, not helping them. what a s***head.
     
  17. swank60

    swank60

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    :bounce:

    Wonder when we'll get an answer on this one?
     
  18. 72FJ40LandCruiser

    72FJ40LandCruiser

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    Andrew Young is a tool. I can't believe he said what he said. I support Mom and Pop stores whenever I can. They are still around because they specialize and provide a service that big box stores cannot. I like to keep them here, so I give them my business when I can.
     
  19. NorCalDoug

    NorCalDoug problems solved daily...

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    I fully agree that Young is an idiot for saying what he did.

    I don't know much about the guy aside from what was in the article, so I really can't speak to how much of a tool he might be...but I suspect that probably is one based on his statement...
     
  20. koop

    koop

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    The thing of it is, leaving aside the racial BS he has a point. Back in the 70's my parents neighborhood "turned black" and along with the white flight of the neighbors there was also the flight of business, including the grocery store. In it's place came the ghetto market with overpriced poor quality food.

    Now, we can go round and round about the economics of running a business in the hood and about whether Wal Mart is an economic benefit to any neighborhood, but his point about lower quality and higher prices is absolutly correct in my experience.

    I'm against Wal Mart moving into my nice middle class neighborhood and putting the local business' under, buy my local business' are nice, clean convenient stores that offer, IMO, a good value. They have to because everyone in my neighborhood has two cars and can travel to a niceer store if need be. But ghetto stores have a captive audience and don't need to be competative. A Wal Mart may be a step up.
     
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