Reports on social media that Hobby Lobby might be closing some or all of their stores turned out to be a report from some years ago and we were one of the companies that shared some old news regarding this issue. We’d like to correct the record of when and where with this update. We at Joe For America apologize for getting caught up in any sharing of outdated information.
Hobby Lobby often hears from concerned customers who have read on social media that the company may be closing some stores. U.S. Herald reported that it all began years ago when, in an open letter, Hobby Lobby Founder and CEO David Green revealed that he may close down, because of religious persecution began by the Obama Regime.
The good news is that the report is old and now outdated. Hobby Lobby is not closing any stores, and in fact, the company is experiencing tremendous growth, opening 50 new stores in 2017 with plans to open more in the following years, thanks in part to the new economic environment.
Green’s battle with the Obama government and his commitment to follow God’s teachings came to a head and Green stood firm after 40-years of being one of the most recognizable and well received stores in America. He would not give in. Now that we have a President who has openly said he is bringing God back into the White House, great companies like Hobby Lobby hopefully will not have to worry about this type of persecution and can get back to the matter of providing great service and goods to their loyal customers.
A lawsuit was filed by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, asking a federal court to stop the Obama mandate which would have forced Hobby Lobby to provide birth contraception drugs, in the form of abortion-causing drugs, which goes against Christian doctrine.
They would eventually prevail, but not before it went all the way to the Supreme Court. Here are some statements from the attorney’s, post-victory:
Carrie Severino, chief counsel to the Judicial Crisis Network, on Hobby Lobby: “The Supreme Court today upheld the liberty at the heart of the Constitution: the right to religious freedom. The Court rightly concluded that the Religious Freedom Restoration Act protects religious business owners just as much as it protects their employees. RFRA guarantees not just a right of religious worship or speech, but religious exercise. Today the Supreme Court reaffirmed religious freedoms that literally centuries of Americans have enjoyed from even before the founding of this country. If the government thinks free contraception is so important, they should pay for it themselves instead of forcing employers to do it for them. Because the left vigorously opposed the result in this case, however, we should be asking whether the next president will appoint justices who share the left’s narrow political views about religious exercise, or whether he will faithfully interpret the law and the Constitution.”
Joshua Hawley, of counsel to the Beckett Fund for Religious Liberty and professor of law at the University of Missouri on Hobby Lobby: “Today’s decision is an enormous victory for personal freedom in America. This decision confirms that people of conscience are welcome in business and that all Americans have the right to follow their moral and social convictions in every walk of life. The right to form one’s own beliefs and live them out peaceably is at the heart of constitutional liberty. That liberty has won out today.”
Here is Hobby Lobby CEO David Green’s open letter in its entirety:
When my family and I started our company 40 years ago, we were working out of a garage on a $600 bank loan, assembling miniature picture frames. Our first retail store wasn’t much bigger than most people’s living rooms, but we had faith that we would succeed if we lived and worked according to God’s word.
From there, Hobby Lobby has become one of the nation’s largest arts and crafts retailers, with more than 500 locations in 41 states. Our children grew up into fine business leaders, and today we run Hobby Lobby together, as a family.
We’re Christians, and we run our business on Christian principles. I’ve always said that the first two goals of our business are (1) to run our business in harmony with God’s laws, and (2) to focus on people more than money. And that’s what we’ve tried to do.
We close early so our employees can see their families at night. We keep our stores closed on Sundays, one of the week’s biggest shopping days, so that our workers and their families can enjoy a day of rest.
We believe that it is by God’s grace that Hobby Lobby has endured, and he has blessed us and our employees. We’ve not only added jobs in a weak economy, we’ve raised wages for the past four years in a row. Our full-time employees start at 80% above minimum wage. But now, our government threatens to change all of that.
A new government healthcare mandate says that our family business MUST provide what I believe are abortion-causing drugs as part of our health insurance.
Being Christians, we don’t pay for drugs that might cause abortions, which means that we don’t cover emergency contraception, the morning-after pill or the week-after pill. We believe doing so might end a life after the moment of conception, something that is contrary to our most important beliefs.
It goes against the Biblical principles on which we have run this company since day one.
If we refuse to comply, we could face $1.3 million PER DAY in government fines.
Our government threatens to fine job creators in a bad economy.
Our government threatens to fine a company that’s raised wages four years running.
Our government threatens to fine a family for running its business according to its beliefs.
It’s not right. I know people will say we ought to follow the rules; that it’s the same for everybody. But that’s not true.
The government has exempted thousands of companies from this mandate, for reasons of convenience or cost. But it won’t exempt them for reasons of religious belief.
So, Hobby Lobby and my family are forced to make a choice. With great reluctance, we filed a lawsuit today, represented by the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, asking a federal court to stop this mandate before it hurts our business.
We don’t like to go running into court, but we no longer have a choice. We believe people are more important than the bottom line and that honoring God is more important than turning a profit.
My family has lived the American dream. We want to continue growing our company and providing great jobs for thousands of employees, but the government is going to make that much more difficult.
The government is forcing us to choose between following our faith and following the law. I say that’s a choice no American and no American business should have to make.
The government cannot force you to follow laws that go against your fundamental religious belief. They have exempted thousands of companies but will not except Christian organizations including the Catholic church.
Since you will not see this in the liberal media, please pass this on to all your contacts.
CEO and Founder of Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc.
It is pure insanity that the federal government under the Obama regime decided to try to micromanage the business world. From Obamacare mandates on abortion and birth control, to the simple baking of sweets.
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