A new Walmart recently opened at the corner of Blackstone and Ashlan Ave.

The Walmart Smartphone Boycott

By Marc Keyser 

We won the battle for a wage increase for 500,000 workers at Walmart, but that’s only half the war. Now more than ever, we must keep up the fight for healthcare coverage for Walmart employees. Instead of picketing in front of the store, just pick up your smartphone and call and boycott Walmart’s Pharmacy. Call 559-470-6969. Tell them you refuse to do business with the pharmacy until Walmart provides healthcare coverage for all their employees. It is just that simple.

The way to gain the upper hand is to call and boycott the Pharmacy Department. If enough of us protest by phone and make enough calls to the pharmacy at Walmart, we can keep the phones busy—which puts customers on hold not for minutes but for hours. Customers who can no longer get a call through to order their prescriptions will be encouraged to take their business to a pharmacy that can answer the phones in a timely manner.

Calling together in solidarity, we can flood the phones at Walmart in Fresno, across the United States and around the globe with the sheer volume of calls, which will cost them enough money to make it cost-effective for Walmart to provide healthcare insurance to all their employees.

All we have to do is call the pharmacy at Walmart, stay on the line and tell them we are not going to shop there. How else will they know we are boycotting if we don’t call and tell them we are boycotting? And how will they know we are still boycotting if we don’t keep calling and reminding them we are still boycotting?

Calling to boycott is nonviolent, legal and extremely practical. We have the right to call and do business with Walmart just as we have the right to call and not do business with Walmart, and we have a moral responsibility to call and tell them we refuse to do business with them as long as they fail to provide healthcare coverage for all their employees.

Instead, going to the work of organizing, we can use our smartphones to call, e-mail, text, Twitter, Facebook and activate activists everywhere to call and boycott the Walmart closest to them in every country. Get the word out on the Internet and calling together in solidarity around the globe, we can flood the phones at every Walmart Pharmacy in every country. Call locally, but activate globally.

Forget being teargassed, shot with rubber bullets or arrested by the police. Calling together, we can safely make enough phone calls to put their pharmacy business on hold without any violence, and without actually being there. Think of this as the invasion of Normandy—not by sea but by smartphone.

Instead of civil disobedience we are engaging in civil discourse. We are simply talking the Walmart’s Pharmacy Department into a state of suspension by drowning them in calls. No one has to lose a day of work standing out in front of Walmart picketing. Everyone can go to work, go shopping, play video games or watch TV—and call at the same time. Multitask.

On the phones, anyone can call from anywhere at any time. It is so convenient. All we have to do is activate the potential activists in our social networks and see how many phone calls we can make collectively. Once we start calling, it is merely a matter of time until we have the numbers to overload the phone system at each Walmart store worldwide—until they see the wisdom of giving their employees healthcare insurance.

Employees should not call and boycott Walton directly. Instead, they can activate their families and friends and social network to have everyone else call and boycott Walmart. The better part of two million employees on their smartphones social networking can do an astronomical amount of activating—without being fired or blacklisted.

The Smartphone Boycott is simple. When a few thousand people begin to call here in Fresno and start to keep the phones busy, the Walmart Smartphone Boycott will make the news. When it makes the news, it will go viral on the Internet, and when it goes viral on the Internet it will become a global event, and when it becomes a global event activists everywhere in social media will be activated to join in calling the nearest Walmart Pharmacy. Then it’s merely a matter of time until we have the numbers to flood their phones and put each Walmart Pharmacy Department on hold—worldwide.

Call 559-470-6969 and tell them you refuse to do business with the pharmacy until Walmart provides healthcare coverage for all its employees.

*****

Marc Keyser may be contacted at ogkeyser@gmail.com or www. OccupySolidarity.com. 

  • The Community Alliance is a monthly newspaper that has been published in Fresno, California, since 1996. The purpose of the newspaper is to help build a progressive movement for social and economic justice.

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