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Hobby Lobby under fire due to absence of Hanukkah products

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  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    Oct. 2, 2013 7:48 p.m.

    This is how it should be.

    Business owners decide what they want to sell.
    People have a right to blog, post, tweet, protest or boycott in response.

    That is the system.

  • DN Subscriber 2 SLC, UT
    Oct. 2, 2013 9:53 p.m.

    Gee, they probably don't have pet supplies, car parts, or fashionable shoes either.

    Stores stock what they think people will want to buy, and in a niche that they think fits their image.

    Instead of whining about the lack of a product, the complainers should recognize this as a wonderful entrepreneurial opportunity to open their own business to cater to a group of customers who have a hard time finding items they want.

    Of course, then the new stores will get complaints that Wiccans, Muslims and Jehova's Witnesses cannot find their holiday items in that store. Well, more opportunities await others!

    The real complain about Hobby Lobby is that they are run by Christians who are not ashamed of their faith, and refuse to be intimidated by the politically correct crowd. You can buy things there or not, it's a free country!

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 12:31 a.m.

    This is a total non issue. However, it's too bad the store clerk wasn't a little more tactful.

  • bw00ds Tucson, AZ
    Oct. 3, 2013 4:10 a.m.

    I agree with @Joeblow and @DN Subscriber 2.

    However, it seems a little suspect to me that the corporation tried to reach out to the complaining blogger for more information (I'm assuming to get to the bottom of the incident) but there was no response. And the store management was unaware that there was an "incident." On the Internet, it is so easy to make stuff up, falsely accuse anyone and any company of anything, and do harm. I'm wondering if this is a legit complaint and if it really happened. Hobby Lobby has been around for years and probably in this specific location for awhile--this is the first time a Jew is finding out that they do not sell Chanukah items?

  • indycrimson Franklin, IN
    Oct. 3, 2013 5:41 a.m.

    This is a joke. Having been a buyer at a mass retailer, you don't have time to buy the core commodities for 2000 stores and then go back and customize each individual store with their local school colors and emblems, religious books and food flavors. Mass equals, mass...take care of the 80% sameness...specialty retail is bought and serviced locally. Covering the niche market.

    This cat, the reporter and the like need to educate vs embarrass themselves.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 6:26 a.m.

    ...and Mr. Green never gave me a $9 million office campus for $1.
    But he did just that for Harvest Bible Chapel.
    The moral of the story is that when you own a company and make a lot of money you should be able to do with it what you wish. The only way to deal with these Internet busybodies is to sue them.

  • Aggielove Cache county, USA
    Oct. 3, 2013 7:28 a.m.

    Lame

  • Contrariuserer mid-state, TN
    Oct. 3, 2013 7:38 a.m.

    @indycrimson --

    "Having been a buyer at a mass retailer, you don't have time to buy the core commodities for 2000 stores and then go back and customize each individual store with their local school colors and emblems, religious books and food flavors."

    Ummmm, even Walmart takes the time to stock T-shirts from local high school and college teams. Hobby Lobby isn't nearly that large. ;-)

    Nonetheless, I do agree that Hobby Lobby has the right to stock what they want. The customers also have the right to complain about it -- especially if the customer response they receive is stupidly insensitive, as this one was.

  • techpubs Sioux City, IA
    Oct. 3, 2013 7:51 a.m.

    This is similar to the recent situations with the Bakery and the Photography Studio that did not wish to make special products for SSM's. The argument will be that if Hobby Lobby carries items to assist people in their celebration of Christmas, then they must carry items for all other celebrations or they are discriminating.
    Those who are pushing to remove the rights of the business owner to choose what products or services they supply will insist that you must accommodate everyone if you are going to open a business.

  • indycrimson Franklin, IN
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:21 a.m.

    Your right. Walmart is the exception and that is they key to their ernormous success. When they opened Utah stores they reduced the adult underwear section, doubled the ice cream inventory, doubled the kids section and reduced beer and wine.

    Conversely, when Sports Authority opened Utah they were loaded with lures for the catching of large mouth bass!!!

    Technogy is great. Walmart has crippled Kmart with there's and never even thought about being prejudist.

  • Whos Life RU Living? Ogden, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:30 a.m.

    The War on Hanukkah!

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:32 a.m.

    “The reason is that Mr. Green's ‘Christian values’ preclude him from selling anything related to a Jewish holiday,” Berwitz wrote. “And not just just Chanukah, but Passover too, as I learned by calling corporate headquarters and speaking to the company's customer relations department.”

    I doubt that this is the reason. Chanukah is merely the story of a miracle, and Passover is central to Christian belief.

    I think it is unfortunate that they don't offer a more diverse stock, but if the items only sold in the areas of high Jewish concentration, they would be losing money across the country, and there would be a lot of menorahs finding their way to the back shelves at Ross.

    I think it is purely a business decision, not some evil bigoted plot.

  • PGVikingDad Pleasant Grove, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    Oh, give me a break. Does the local Hobby Lobby sell CTR rings and temple photos? I suppose not, despite the overwhelming number of local Mormons. Am I to be offended, then, or to feel persecuted? I suppose not.

  • LVIS Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    My sense of the matter is that even IF they carried Hanukka items, the blogger wouldn't have bought them at Hobby Lobby. He just wanted to make some noise.

  • Shimlau SAINT GEORGE, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 8:38 a.m.

    DN 2; It should be real easy to stock a store for Jehovah's Witness' holidays. If memory serves me right, they don't celebrate any holidays.

  • LittleStream Carson City, NV
    Oct. 3, 2013 9:04 a.m.

    This makes no sense to me! Don't they know that Jesus and his parents were Jews? For a store who maintains that they are run on Christian values, they are denying Jesus's heritage. Strange! Makes no sense.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    Oct. 3, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    "Sadly, this Oklahoma-based business owner, David Green (which sounds pretty Jewish) equates being a Christian with disregarding Jewish holidays in a town such as Marlboro, New Jersey, which is 1/3 comprised of Jews,” she wrote. “His response is fluff talk for what appears to be unequivocal anti-semitic feelings.”

    Wait a sec...so the fact that the store doesn't carry merchandise for Jewish holidays makes the owner anti-semitic?

    Since my business does not sell any merchandise for Pioneer Day, Christmas, or Easter, I guess that makes me anti-Mormon. Even though I'm Mormon. Oh I'm feeling so conflicted this morning.

  • stanfunky Salt Lake City, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 9:33 a.m.

    Business owners can sell / stock what they CHOOSE. If enough of the population doesn't agree with their selection, pricing, or other factors, they won't frequent the business and it will go under. Hobby Lobby stocks what sells, to the most people, for pricing that gives them a healthy profit margin, and that's why they are successful.

    Perhaps the blogger should start his own Hanukkah themed outlet store, if it's an underserved market.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 9:37 a.m.

    There are dozens of major stores that don't sell Jewish holiday items. Why hasn't this person complained about them? It's simply because the owners of Hobby Lobby had the fortitude to stand up for their Christian religious believes in public. And now detractors are out to try to get them. It's totally obvious and actually silly that this is considered newsworthy.

    The reason so many major stores don't stock these particular items is because almost all of them would all lose money on them. In most areas, there simply aren't enough Jews to justify stocking the items. All retail stores primary purpose is to show a profit. In economics, it's based off of the law of supply and demand. It's called free enterprise for a reason. Owners have (or should have) the freedom to sell what and where they want to.

    Hang in there, Hobby Lobby. You're in the right... again!

  • raybies Layton, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 9:53 a.m.

    I'm concerned that Hobby Lobby doesn't sell enough Voodoo dolls and Wiccan supplies.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 10:06 a.m.

    @ LittleStream:

    You are missing the entire point of this particular issue. Hobby Lobby is a retail store... not a religious shrine. They sell craft items which have the biggest demand. Their primary purpose isn't to try to promote and demote any particular religion, but to stay in business by showing a profit... the same goal of all retail stores.

    But back to your particular thinking... Though Jesus had Jewish heritage, He has been denied by the Jews since before his death as being the Savior and Messiah of the world (which I personally know him to be). The Jews are still waiting for that person. Therefore, a person or establishment doesn't promote Jesus by catering to Judaism... or visa versa.

  • Nan BW ELder, CO
    Oct. 3, 2013 10:10 a.m.

    The comments for the article are great, and quite entertaining. It does seem like a total non-issue, but it made for an interesting story. I'd never thought of looking for religious themed goods at Hobby Lobby. I thought of it as a craft store where you buy supplies and make them into whatever you want. I've been decorating squash that became too tough for eating. I can make my silly creatures into any religion I want, but being mentally slow that hadn't occurred to me.

  • fllack Winnsboro, TX
    Oct. 3, 2013 11:16 a.m.

    I don't think that its the idea of not having the items, I think the comment that we don't serve you because you are Jewish, that's the problem.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 12:23 p.m.

    The point most of the commentors have failed to get is this:

    ‘We don't cater to you people.’

  • jsf Centerville, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 12:24 p.m.

    @fllack Its alleged to have been said, no confirmation that it was said.

  • donn layton, UT
    Oct. 3, 2013 4:18 p.m.

    Does Deseret Books have to sell Christians items? Like #1 selling NIV Bible.

    How about items for Bible study like the Greek N.T. and the Greek LXX.

    How about Bible aids like Vines concordances and Thayer’s Lexicon(Greek to English Dictionary). And for serious Bible study Critical apparatuses for lower criticism.

    Gifts like crucifixes or crosses,Of course they don’t,you just go to a Christian bookstore to get these items.

  • Red Smith American Fork, UT
    Oct. 6, 2013 9:43 a.m.

    One $10 per hour employee makes a comment,and the whole company is guilty a social crime. Seems like an extreme approach to the issue. Hobby Lobby will probably just go out of business and into another business that is less controversial.

  • vern001 Castle Rock, CO
    Oct. 7, 2013 7:28 a.m.

    @indycrimson --

    The Orem Costco sells many LDS items and books that I never see at my Colorado Costco. My Walgreens has t-shirts and sweatshirts for the local high school. How pathetic that a Hobby Lobby in a town like Marlboro, NJ, where 25% of the population is Jewish, can't work harder to serve that market.

    I agree wholeheartedly that stores should be free to stock what they want. And I hope that the local Jewish population will exercise their freedom to boycott Hobby Lobby too.

  • Badgerbadger Murray, UT
    Oct. 9, 2013 8:04 a.m.

    Look how evil they are! They don't even have Hanukkah items for sale! They must be bigots!

    Hobby Lobby should sue the news outlets for this story. Sure customers have the right to ask stores to carry things they are interested in, but it is not news. No other store would ever have made the news for not having Hanukkah items. It is purely a targeted attack (with malice) on their store, which the main stream media has already had in the cross-hairs and over their stand on the ACA.

    Hobby Lobby stands to get a good settlement, and I hope they get it. It would be a great step in stopping persecution of Christians in America.

  • Contrariuser mid-state, TN
    Oct. 9, 2013 9:20 a.m.

    @Badgerbadger --

    "Hobby Lobby stands to get a good settlement, and I hope they get it. "

    Never gonna happen.

    There is no law in this country against even "targeted malicious attacks", as long as the statements are true. If there were such a law, Republicans would be paying out legal settlements left and right. ;-)