As unpopular of a statement as this may be, we have become a culture of sheep. It is, after all, what happens when financially dominant institutions try to protect us from the things that they deem socially unacceptable, and we allow them to do so. There are always signs pointing to forced lifestyle change, but all too often, we tend to wait for the positive effects of such actions, while the negative factors embed themselves in our everyday lives.
We do not necessarily submit because we are predestined to do so, but it’s more about our longing for what is inevitably false hope. How is it we can so easily buy into corporate climates whose very foundations are built on moral corruption, while claiming to protect us from that very fate? As with so many of history’s fails, it starts with a “what’s-in-it-for-me” mentality, followed by submission to convenience.
Wal-Mart is no stranger to the sour side of the limelight in recent years, and its recent actions are not helping its case in achieving favorable public opinion. Its current controversy does not encompass how the corporate giant lays waste to small businesses or the way in which it treats its employees. No, this latest blunder affects you directly and in such a subtle way you may not even realize what is happening. This past week, Wal-Mart decided that in an effort to protect you, it would ban a book.
As trivial as this may sound compared to its previous debacles, the fact that Wal-Mart is refusing to carry UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey’s upcoming book “My Fight/Your Fight” in stores due to the fact that she’s too violent is quite ironic considering the corporate giant was targeted by filmmaker Michael Moore in his 2002 movie “Bowling for Columbine” for making both guns and ammunition easily available to the American public — something the company still does, leaving us to question the decision-making practices of a company with such a dysfunctional moral compass.
Regardless, the blame falls on us consumers.
Over the years, we have allowed Wal-Mart to change the way we shop based on both price and convenience, all the while ignoring the company’s views on how it treat its employees, making it hard for us as consumers to stand up and say that what it’s doing is wrong without being hypocritical. Although some might feel it’s worth it to take a stand against the corporation, it is doubtful anyone will sacrifice convenience for what may be right, since we have become nothing short of a submissive society.
To date, “My Fight/Your Fight,” which is slated for a May 12 release, has already pre-sold thousands of copies on the Barnes & Noble website before the start of the book’s promotional tour. Regardless of your opinion of this multi-talented woman, Rousey’s book has the potential to help motivate and expand her existing fanbase by encouraging readers to follow their dreams, something our suppressed society could use more of.
Currently, you can pre-order “My Fight/Your Fight” on Wal-Mart’s website, but if you plan on picking up the book, please consider doing it from a local bookshop. Maybe it is time to let Wal-Mart know that if it chooses to deal in weapons over books in the name of our wellbeing, the fights it may have to face won’t come form former Olympic medalist and current undefeated world champion Ronda Rousey, but rather from the American public, who will hopefully wake up from Wal-Mart’s self-righteous knockout punch to realize that enough is enough already.
Tom Roarty is a contributing journalist for TheBlot Magazine.