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American Department Store: 'We Don't Cater To Your People'

The department chain Hobby Lobby backtracks after accusations of anti-Semitism when they refused to sell Chanukah items

By: Zak Edwards
Published: October 3rd, 2013 in News » World
Hobby Lobby

American department store Hobby Lobby is attempting some careful damage control after potentially anti-Semitic remarks were made to customers inquiring about Chanukuh merchandise for the upcoming holiday season.

Last Friday, Ohio blogger Ken Berwitz wrote about his recent clash with Hobby Lobby employees over a notable omission in his local store’s holiday merchandise. Apparently, when Berwitz called his local store to ask about product availability, he was told, "We don’t cater to your people" and that "Mr. Green is the owner of the company, he's a Christian, and those are his values."

While the company has said that these sentiments are not a part of their corporate culture, they seem indicative of a larger issue; namely CEO David Green’s Evangelical mission statement on the company’s website. Green claims that Hobby Lobby "honor[s] the Lord in all we do by operating the company in a manner consistent with biblical principles… offering our customers exceptional selection and value in the crafts and home decor market."

The selection, it seems, is limited and the biblical principles are a bit selective.

In remarks to the Entrepreneur, Hobby Lobby claims they are "currently working with our buyers over our merchandise selection. Due to multiple customer requests, we are currently evaluating our Holiday items and what we will carry in the future." But in the very definition of irony, Hobby Lobby ends the statement with "we are blessed to be apart (sic.) the community."

Whatever their projected solutions, I think this misstep speaks more than any amount of reluctantly stocked dreidels could ever make up for. My business will stay "apart."

Related articles: Jewish News, anti-Semitism, Hobby Lobby, Department Chain, Chanukah
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