VERIFY: Does Hobby Lobby refuse to sell Jewish holiday cards and decorations?

Does Hobby Lobby refuse to sell Jewish holiday cards and decorations?

WASHINGTON (WUSA) - QUESTION:

Does Hobby Lobby refuse to sell Jewish holiday cards and decorations?

ANSWER:

Old news from 2013. Now they sell them in the DMV.

SOURCES:

Hobby Lobby Stores

Hobby Lobby Statement 

Ken Berwitz- blogger- Hopelessly Partisan

PROCESS:

Sometimes people recycle old issues with new headlines, creating big problems. 

On Facebook and Twitter, people proposed a boycott on Hobby Lobby, whom they claim refuses to sell Jewish holiday items. 

The issue ignited in 2013 when New Jersey Blogger wrote of a friend who tried to purchase a Bar Mitzvah card at the nearby Hobby Lobby crafts store .

An employee said they didn't carry Jewish items and allegedly said that the stores don't "cater to you people."

Ken Berwitz's, chief blogger of Hopelessly Partisans, wrote a piece that went viral. In it he writes that he will not step foot in a one of Hobby Lobbys stores. The message spread and others vowed abstinence, too.

"There were people a lot of them that thought I called for a boycott--I can't tell you about the number of things I read that talked about 'my boycott'--read the blog, find the words where I am asking people not to shop there," Berwitz said. "The answer is that they don't exist."

A few days later Hobby Lobby President Steve Green gave Berwitz a ring, the blogger told Verify.

Green explained every single store is stocked with identical merchandise and there wasn't a demand for Jewish products. 

"We had a very friendly conversation...and he told me that this was a cookie cutter operation with 70,000 items more or less and every one of those 70,000 items were sold in every store," Berwitz said. "I reminded him as somebody with a rich history in marketing research or marketing issues that this may have worked when they had a limited geographic area or culture base...but now the mix is very different where that model does not apply."

In 2013, Green agreed to add menorahs, driedels and other Jewish holiday decorations to his Christian craft stores. 

But did they follow through.

Last month Verify called all the Hobby Lobby stores in New Jersey, where Berwitz resides. Every store had Channukah displays ready or were awaiting shipments.

We also checked with the 14 Hobby Lobby stores in our DMV area. All stores had Jewish holiday items ready to sell.

© 2018 WUSA-TV


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