Skip to comments.Stop calling Hobby Lobby a Christian business
Posted on 07/01/2014 7:52:13 AM PDT by Wolfie
Stop calling Hobby Lobby a Christian business
The craft store is exalted by the conservative faithful. But it conducts business in a way that flouts Christian values.
"We're Christians," Hobby Lobby's president Steve Green proclaims, "and we run our business on Christian principles."
That is music to the ears of many conservative Christians, who rallied around Hobby Lobby when the retail chain argued at the Supreme Court that ObamaCare's contraception mandate unlawfully burdened their religious beliefs. But a closer look at Hobby Lobby's actual business practices reveals this claim to be as hollow as a flute. Turn over just about any trinket in a Hobby Lobby store and you'll find a gold oval stamped with "Made in China," a country that is one of the worst offenders of human dignity, unborn infant life, and economic justice anywhere in the world.
As such, those shiny stickers littering every Hobby Lobby from sea to shining sea are more than a statement about a product's geographical origin; they are also a stinging indictment against the way the retailer has sought to label itself.
Imagine for a moment a nation with nightmarish labor conditions, inadequate workplace regulation, and rampant child labor. You've just imagined 21st century China. Seventy thousand Chinese employees die every year in workplace accidents that's roughly 200 humans snuffed out of existence every day.
Some provinces in China are raising their minimum wage standards. But don't rush to praise them. Starting this year in Shanghai, minimum wage is rising to only $293 per month a paltry figure that is still the highest amount paid in all of mainland China. That's about $9.77 per day. If you were wondering how Hobby Lobby can sell wicker baskets for next to nothing, now you know.
The Bible is replete with calls for economic justice. Can you call yourself a "Christian business" when you leverage your profits to support an economic system that blatantly perpetuates injustice?
China is also the 20th worst in the world for child labor. Can you call yourself a "Christian business" when you support underage labor? Jesus, after all, taught that taking one's own life is preferable to harming a child.
And what of China's one-child policy, which disincentivizes having daughters to the point that it fuels an underground abortion industry? Data shows that 13 million abortions are performed in the country each year. About 35,000 infant lives are terminated in China every day, and 336 million abortions have taken place there over the last four decades. According to Steven Mosher of Population Research Institute, "most of those abortions have the character of a rape. That is, they were performed on women who were ordered, or even physically forced, to submit to the knife."
Perhaps we shouldn't be surprised, then, that China accounts for 19 percent of the global population, but 56 percent of the world's female suicides. Approximately 500 women take their own lives in China every day.
Though China somewhat relaxed its controversial 35-year-old policy recently, Max Fisher of The Washington Post has noted that the policy still leads to forced abortions in addition to sterilizations and infanticide and always will.
Now, of course, a huge number of American companies outsource labor to China, and thus help prop up this shameful status quo. But very few of these American companies simultaneously trumpet themselves as "Christian businesses," arguing in court that providing employees with health insurance covering contraceptives violates their religious beliefs. How can this ObamaCare mandate be so foul to Hobby Lobby executives, while they say very little about Chinese policies forcing women to have abortions against their wills? Is abortion wrong only when the terminated life is American?
The most glaring inconsistency between Hobby Lobby's ethical proclamations and its business decisions concerns the matter of religious liberty. The craft store chain is hailed by conservatives as standing up to Uncle Sam and fighting for religious freedom. Yet Hobby Lobby imports billions of dollars worth of bric-a-brac from a nation that denies 1.35 billion citizens freedom of worship.
If Hobby Lobby was concerned with religious freedoms not just those of conservative American Christians it would quit doing business in China.
Hobby Lobby reminds us why for-profit businesses should resist calling themselves "Christian." The free market is messy and complicated and riddled with hypocrisy. Conducting business in today's complex global economy almost ensures one will engage in behavior that is at least morally suspect from a Biblical standpoint.
If you want to call your business "Christian," by all means, go right ahead. But those who live by the label must die by it as well. You cannot call your business "Christian" when arguing before the Supreme Court, and then set aside Christian values when you're placing a bulk order for cheap wind chimes.
Every time you buy a decorative platter from Hobby Lobby with a Bible verse stamped across it, you have funded the company's fight against the HHS contraception mandate. But you're also sending a chunk of change to a country that forces people to abort their children, flouts basic standards of workplace dignity, and denies more than a billion people the right to worship.
The old “guilt by association” fallacy.
so by the author’s logic we should, if we haven’t already, stop calling pro-abortion people Christians.
This kind of drivel usually didn’t make it into print.
Boo hoo, lefties. I’ll continue to shop at Hobby Lobby regardless of your vitriol and hatred. Meanwhile, Target can get stuffed.
How desperate. To attack Hobby Lobby on this basis?
Very lame and pathetic.
Liberal policies destroy huge swaths of domestic industry, and then they whine that the stores are all filled with imported goods.
Shouldn’t they be happy Hobby Lobby is filled with Chinese goods? After all, China’s even further down the path they want to take us.
Maybe the Left will decide to stop promoting Communism and Socialism now that they have all refused to sell anything made by a Socialist country...
What Bible is he reading?
I love it when non Christians tell me what the standard is that I'm supposed to live by.
Now come the broadsides against Hobby Lobby and the Greens. Settle in for a long siege.
Or better yet, go on the offensive. Attack the hypocrisy of the Left’s cherished institutions; it should be easy enough.
The leftards haven’t been this twisted up since, well, since the last time they didn’t get their way....
So he believes that those who supported HL’s fight for religious freedom somehow now claim HL is infallible? This man is an idiot.
Where? I have read the Bible numerous times and have never seen this in any manifestation. Christ told us to remember the poor, not once did He mandate that we should perpetuate their plight. His first and foremost consideration was their eternal soul. Aside from that, render unto Caesar.
So the store sells around 60,000 items. They could stop the chinese items and sell 100. Think about how much they could save on cost of goods sold. Heck, they might be able to just have their immediate family work there.
The indictment is not so much against Hobby Lobby, as it is against the policies of the Peoples’ Republic of China.
And what would this carping have to do with the business practices of Hobby Lobby? As an enterprise, the business treats its employees with respect and understanding, and its customers with fair pricing and convenient access. And these are not virtues in today’s world?
Hobby Lobby can do only so much in assuring an equitable relationship among all the elements that go to make up the complex interrelationships that govern business dealings around the world. The Chinese, for all their mismanagement of human talent they have at their disposal, still produce reasonably good marketable items as a price that wholesalers find attractive, and they supply them in great quantity. Whether that supply chain is altogether doing “the greatest good for the greatest number”, is a matter to take up with the Chinese.
If they are even inclined to listen.
I neither defend nor attack the Chinese for the policies they use to attain the productivity they have achieved. But if their methods trouble the liberal mind so much, why is not the righteous wrath of the critics directed at the source of these methods?
Hardly ... but it is replete with calls to repent and believe.
Matt 3:2 Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
Mark 1:15 The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.
Acts 17:30 Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.
I have received several “The Week” solicitations in the form of a free copy of the current issue. It is like a “Reader’s Digest” condensed version of the news but with editorials. Did not take more than a few pages to realize that it did have a strong left bias (surprise - not!) No interest then or now. This reinforces my disinterest!
The War-On-Walmart takes a break for a week or so.....
Libs want the money and the pedophile style. What else is the point of this article but free sexual exploitation and attafking of anyone rejecting the abortion invite.
I agree somewhat. Evervsince I watched Death By China (on Netfix now I think) I have been extremely bothered. But it, s almost impossible to break the MIC addiction. Ex., I need a new toilet brush, have been looking for 3 mos. Now haxe a bad ring around the bowl, looks like third world in my commode. Posting from s. Korean galxy tab.
The "bottom line" profit isn't even at issue here.
If HL refused to source products from China or other low-wage countries, it would have to raise its prices to much higher than competitors, and would quickly be put out of business. It's not a "how much money can I stick in my pocket" type of question. It's a "will I be in business next year" question
Largely because Americans and others have been willing to do business with China (and other low-wage countries), the world absolute poverty rate was cut in half from 1990 to 2010. That's over a billion more people who have something, at least, above bare subsistence now. That improvement is enormously greater than any other period in history.
So because China does not presently meet our standards for treatment of workers, we should refuse to buy their products? How does the author expect China to ever become able to meet our standards?
Trotting out the Walmart attack.
How true. Total desperation.
Another of N examples (where N is a very large number) where the term “liberal logic” is once again shown to be an oxymoron.
He’s talking about the Karl Marx bible.
hardly a peep outta them about the USSC slapping down their unions though.
hear, hear! and what better way to remember the poor than to purchase their goods? when i go to the little town of Rosarito in Mexico, should i ignore the little boy selling chicle? would that be charitable? whoever came up with "libtard" hit the nail on the head...
“The Bible is replete with calls for economic justice.” No, the Bible is replete with calls for righteousness. Too often people who are ignorant of both the Bible and economics seek to cloak their idea of what is fair in terms that redefine righteousness and sound economics.
For example, two of the Ten Commands directly relate to property, the ones that forbid coveting and theft. When someone suggests taking from one party and giving to another, that theft is justified by the lie that justice is served by the coveting and theft. This is just sin dressed up in social justice.
When dealing with a supplier, the relationship is economic. While I may care for the working conditions of others, that is their private business, not mine. There is a delineation between the things under my control that I am responsible for and the things that others are responsible for. And in particular, it is quite a stretch to hold the seller of a good responsible for all the actions of his supplier, especially when the buyer makes his expectations clear at the time of the contract.
Now, the buyer might be a well-respected brand that places subjective value on their public reputation. While third-world working conditions are hardly ever good, it reflects life in their third world. Indeed, why there is a “third world”. The issue is far more broadly local, political and social.
Disney alone has over a thousand suppliers in the third world, so many that they can’t even audit them regularly. While it could cause Disney to have their brand tarnished when some worker abuse reaches the national news, Disney never would direct workers to be abused, or sanction any abuse. Often contracts are sub-contracted without any knowledge on the part of the national brand buyer. The buyer has almost zero control over many of the places where their products are made and even less leverage in controlling relationships between worker and supplier.
In short, only the people in Pakistan or Vietnam can resolve their own issues. No national brand can. Brands can at best take steps to avoid the worst abusers.
I speak as having been an adviser to a company that facilitates workers in third-world countries to communicate workplace violence and safety issues to their first-world buyers.
So, the author is in the habit of looking at the label of every consumer item to see where it is made. And when it is made in China, the author does not buy it. Riiight.
The New York Times today had an hysterical (and, as usual, inaccurate) editorial on the Hobby Lobby decision.
The truth about Hobby Lobby. Although they offer other avenues of contraception to their employees, they would not support the mandated abortion and abortifacients (Morning after pill and other products that destroy an embryo -- already fertilized.).
It's that simple because they are a closely held (family) business that believes and lives their religion in their business. They even play religious music in their stores. (And not just at Christmas!)
God bless them.
PS. This does not apply to corporations, etc. as the libs would have you believe.
Of course the real issue is not whether Hobby Lobby is genuinely “Christian” or not.
The issue is whether or not a person, or a family which owns and operates a business, has religious liberty as stated in the First Amendment, to operate said business according to their religious values and beliefs. And, can that business be forced by the government to violate their religious beliefs? The SCOTUS just said, No.
Of course, this should also have implications regarding laws forcing business owners to do business with “same-sex” couples for same-sex weddings, even though doing so violates their religious beliefs that doing so would support a behavior they believe to be a sin against God.
Thanks to the LIBERAL Clinton who signed NAFTA and gave CHINA Most Favored Nation Status flinging wide open the spigot of cheap labor products, as well as ridiculous minimum wage and regulations on business, It is virtually impossible to find anything NOT made in China.
Cork Soaking Apple Holes!
This article is pure Alinsky.
Top that with the fact that this new line of BS is all coming about because the democrat fascist eugenics crowd is afraid that they won't be able to murder infants in the womb fast enough without forced funding of such murders.
Well, thank God we have infant slaughtering, perversion loving, pagan, democrat fascist, liars to define how a Christian should do behave so we're not cast adrift to rely on the Word of God and two thousand years of Christian teaching.