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FALL RIVER, Mass.--News is trickling in slowly, as slowly as dusk settles in on the parking lot of a big-box store in a suburb where most of the kids play soccer.
They're standing up at Wal-Mart.
Just a little noise, just a little murmur of two employees talking in the break room, going quiet when the supervisor comes into the room.
Just a little anger. Just a little convo over by the three-for-$10 CD bin. Just a little tired. Just a little tired of making somebody else rich.
Just little people. Just the people who shot the British from behind stone walls. Just the people who whipped Hitler. Just America, the America that was supposed to be "lucky to have a job" in these hard times.
In some places, there's no union leading them, but they're starting to walk out of the big-box stores, starting to complain, refusing to shut up.
They're breaking the rules of the employee handbook, the document that, in America today, is more sacred and has more force than the U.S. Constitution.
There are men among them who kissed death's scaly mouth in Afghanistan, women who got a free gun when they joined the Army and a part-time cashier's job after they were spit out of the hero machine.
They're walking out of Wal-Mart stores, talking dissatisfaction, talking anger, talking union, talking by God America.
Some guy with a neck tattoo. Some woman with a fake diamond stud in her nose. Somebody fed up with the boss.
Mitt Romney isn't with them, and neither is Obama. Maybe nobody's with them, and that's all right. They can stand up alone, just like they can find and keep a job all by themselves and pay the bills alone and cry alone and stand, alone, and listen to the doctor say the baby was born with a hole in his heart.
And the press doesn't know how to cover a real rising of the people. It's been so long since they've seen one.
And they'll be shoved around, shoved by lawyers and politicians and people who like them to stay poor. And they will be fired and threatened.
In America, where we print the job very high up in the obituary, what takes more strength than to walk off the job, to risk falling from the world of work?
When your car doesn't run that good. When all you have is high school. When your English is rough.
When there's a baby at home. And in the face of those things, of rent and the electric bill, in the face of that, to stand up and say, "I won't shut up," or, "I don't like the way they treat me," or, "They can pay us more," that isn't socialism. That's heroism.
The man who puts his jacket on and walks out the door under his supervisor's hard look is Thomas Jefferson. The woman who tells her husband she'll strike even though they both know they need her pay, that woman is John Hancock. They are the founders of this America.
Stand up, Wal-Mart! Stand up!
Marc Munroe Dion is a columnist