In my small town, one of the many topics that comes up repeatedly is focused around Wal*Mart (and other chains) and how they are killing the small-town mentality and local business'.
This just added fuel to the fire.
I don't really care for Wal*Mart, mostly because of the censorship thing with their music. And isn't it wonderful to be idealistic and swear off big-box stores in favor of smaller boutiques?
I was all about this until I had kids. Especially Lilli, did you know that Meijer and Wal*Mart are the only stores within a 20 mile radius of my house that carry preemie diapers? I couldn't find one mom and pop or boutique store that even carried diapers, let alone preemie diapers. Target doesn't even.
Also, when buying clothes for a 2 year old which will most likely be stained or grown out of in a week, I head to a big box store. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to buy all their stuff from Strassburg and Hanna Andersson, but I can't spend $15/shirt that won't last around here.
I do however buy all my books from my local bookstore (which is quite a few) eat at a local restaurant at least 2-3 times a week, buy flowers from my local florist, buy my hometown newspaper, and Adam bought my birthday present at the local jewelers.
For Christmas, my sister and I get angels from the angle trees, in lieu of presents for some family members. Our budget goes a lot further at Target or Wal*Mart, allowing us to give these kids clothes, presents and just a little bit more then if we were limited to just boutique shopping.