A controversial new video by political activist, Neal Rodriguez takes Wal-Mart to task regarding the low wage the massive company pays its employees. Neal Rodriguez sites a recent UC Berkeley study that claims that if Wal-Mart were to raise the wages of its employees to 12 dollars - a 33% increase to the average Wal-Mart employee’s staring wage - that it would only cost Wal-Mart customers an additional 47 cents per purchase. Rodriguez argues in the video that for the price of two gumballs, thousands of Wal-Mart employees would receive a more livable wage.
The video, which is part angry rant and part slam poem, features Neal Rodriguez demanding Wal-Mart increase its employee’s pay, and then addresses the ways in which Wal-Mart consumers could make due paying an extra 47 cents per visit. Most of Rodriguez’s ideas are facetious to showcase just how little the price increase would affect Wal-Mart customers.
The video has sparked heated debate on Reddit and Youtube. The video itself has nearly as many negative votes as positive ones. Many viewers argue that it is not fair to punish consumers in an attempt to supply workers with better wages. Even if the price increase would be small, detractors of the video claim that if Wal-Mart wants to pay employees more that the company itself should pay for it instead of passing the bill onto consumers.
What do you think? Would you support a 47-cent increase in price at Wal-Mart if it meant higher wages for store employees? Or do you think that it is Wal-Mart’s job to support their staff without punishing its own customers?