The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Chicago Walmarts Closing

Apr 17, 2023

Walmart announced it is closing four stores in Chicago—half the Walmarts in the city. All four are in working class, Black or Latino neighborhoods.

In 2020, after the protests that followed the murder of George Floyd, Walmart claimed its Chicago stores were part of its corporate “racial justice initiative.” City leaders applauded them and offered “incentives” for Walmart to stay in these underserved neighborhoods.

If we didn’t already realize it, the corporations and politicians’ promises of “racial justice” or “helping underserved communities” aren’t even worth the paper they are printed on. In this capitalist system, stores only stay open if they can make a big enough profit.

And the company claims these stores have been losing increasing amounts of money in the last few years. Walmart noted that shoppers are feeling pinched by inflation and are cutting spending. True enough—every worker already knows that wages aren’t keeping up with prices. And by the way, that includes the 1.6 million Walmart workers in the U.S.!

The quality of goods at Walmart might not be great. But the quality at the few dollar stores and corner stores they leave behind is even worse.