Recently, the New Orleans City Council has identified yet another public scourge demanding immediate action: the proliferation of “dollar” stores – medium-sized discount variety stores that sell diverse consumer goods at set prices.
Councilman Jon Johnson and Councilwoman Cynthia Hedge-Morrell have led the charge. Hedge Morrell argues that the growth of dollar stores, particularly Family Dollar and Dollar General, “is defeating the purpose of us trying to get retail back into the East, back into the city.”
“The community,” says Hedge-Morrell, “is adamant that they do not want another Dollar General, another Family Dollar within a five-block radius.”
Of course, if the “community” really disfavored dollar stores, they wouldn’t patronize them and they would quickly fail. No smart business moves into a market where they are truly unwanted. Accordingly, what Hedge-Morrell really means is that certain like-minded community activists – primarily the well-to-do – oppose new dollar stores.