Is Wal-Mart Too Big to Sue?

Nicole Fabian-Weber
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walmartOh, Wal-Mart. You really never fail to impress me. Not only do you boast an impressive inventory of useless stuff (as well as wine kiosks -- but that's not useless), you are just too darn big to sue -- even if you are allegedly discriminating against women by paying them less and giving them fewer promotion opportunities. Well done, my friends, well done.

See, the Wal-Mart discrimination suit took an interesting turn in the ol' Supreme Court yesterday. The justices, smart, reasonable people that they are, think that suing Wal-Mart might just be too crazy because of its size (for which I believe the technical term is "ginormous"). They're all, "How can you sue a company when there are so many individual stores? Each manager is responsible for their own place." And I'm all, "What are the odds of thousands of Wal-Marts all paying their female employees less?" What up with that, Scalia?

I mean, part of me gets what the Court is saying. Technically. Technically, each store has a manager who enforces his or her own rules -- to an extent. I've never worked at a Wal-Mart (I was a Baskin-Robbins girl back in the day -- shout out to Quarterback Crunch!), but I'd imagine that there's some sort of handbook, or training, or observing that goes on before you're promoted to manager, no?

These men who are in charge of their stores learned from some other man who was there before them. Kind of like a monkey-see, monkey-do thing, which in this case seems oh-so apropos. Of course it doesn't say in section 9, sub-section 12 in the Wal-Mart handbook, "Don't pay women as much as men." That would be grounds for a lawsuit! But how crazy is it that these Wal-Marts are supposedly all paying and promoting the ladies less? I don't know about you, Sotomayor, but I'm thinkin' slim. 

More than anything, though, I feel bad for these women who have worked so hard to get to this point, who have taken a stand for what's right. It's starting to seem like nothing is going to come of it. What then? Things will probably only get worse because the corporation of Wal-Mart and the men who run its stores will think that they're untouchable. But I guess they would be right, though. They kind of are.

What do you think about the Wal-Mart suit?

 

Image via Monochrome/Flickr

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