Aside from the fact that Walmart is actually not “capitalism gone wrong” but “capitalism gone very well according to its own logic”, the answer to this article’s hypothetical question is actually quite simple: the people who shop at Walmart are by-and-large those people who can’t afford to shop at the supposedly “ethical” stores that charge prices beyond what most people cannot afford. Indeed, that offensive “People of Walmart” site (which I refuse to link on principle) is evidence of this fact since it is primarily a site devoted to mocking the poor.
Hence, anti-consumerist politics is a lifestyle politics that assumes the problem with capitalism lurks at the point of consumption rather than the point of production; it assumes that the solution to capitalism is based on our buying choices, on de-commodifying by refusing to buy from big corporations, and living as pure anti-capitalists in an individual sense. The fact that the vast majority of people, especially those with the power to change society, cannot opt out in this kind of way, or the fact that buying at ‘ethical’ sites of production does not at all escape commodification, eludes this simplistic and self-righteous politics. Nor do most of the people who push this anti-consumerism see any contradiction in wearing clothes, walking down sidewalks, or living at the centres of capitalism which is entirely dependent on the brutal system they claim they are fighting when they make fun of people buying Banksy prints at Walmart.
This is a resource post for all the Good White Person™s out there. You know, the ones who say things like “It’s not my fault I’m white! Don’t generalize white people!”, or “I’m appreciating your culture! You should be proud!”, or “Why do you hate all white people, look I’m a special snowflake who’s not racist give me an award for meeting the minimum requirements for being a decent human being”.
Well, if you are actually interested in understanding racism and how it ties into cultural appropriation, please read instead of endlessly badgering PoCs on tumblr with your cliched, unoriginal arguments and repeating the same questions over and over.
On White Privilege aka don’t blame me just because I’m white: