The Walmart to Hate Group Correlation
While correlation is not causation, and while I don’t agree with the subsequent thesis by the studies authors, this is an interesting set of facts.
“Wal-Mart has clearly done good things in these communities, especially in terms of lowering prices,” Stephan Goetz, professor of agricultural economics and regional economics, explained. “But there may be indirect costs that are not as obvious as other effects.”
The study, published in Social Science Quarterly, found that the number of Wal-Mart stores was a better predictor of hate group participation than the unemployment rate, high crime rates and low education.
There were 1,018 active hate groups in the United States in 2011, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, up from 1,002 in 2010.
The researchers believe that the correlation between Wal-Mart and hate groups exists because of breakdown of the community. Small local businesses are more likely to be members of civic groups and involved in the community. They are also more likely to have closer relationships among their employees.