Tonight I am reading, as I have been for the past three nights, Bill Kauffman's Dispatches from the Muckdog Gazette.
I come to this passage, related to the rising of Wal-Mart in Batavia:
My voice is as mute as the others in that silent night, unholy night. I supposed I am of the old school of Thoreau and Emerson in that I distrust political solutions and prefer individual revolutions of the soul. I sympathized with those townspeople who wished to keep Wal-Mart out. But instead of passing laws to compel behavior I would rather my neighbors choose to shop locally. They will only do so when Batavia becomes once more a city with its own flavor and fashions. Whether that day will come, I do not know.
For me, if The Batavian can accomplish one thing, it will be to give voice to the people who want Batavia to be Batavia again.
I'm no Pollyanna. I know we cannot put the Brylcreem back in the tube, or unwind the the movie or rebuild C.L. Carr's, but we can promote an ideal that a rural town like Batavia should be more than bathroom break on the Thruway.
We have our corporate sponsors, which means that if the heavens opened up and Wal-Mart or Kmart decided to bequeath to us some ungodly sum of money for advertising (not likely, ever), we couldn't say no, but we are here first and foremost to support the businesses that support Batavia (and the rest of Genesee County).
We only ask one thing -- that you do the same. Before your next trip to Wal-Mart or Target, find out what local shop can do you the same service and patronize that store first.