Columbia outerwear si, Hobby Lobby no

When this world gets back to normal … I’m going to resume my art and craft and hobby excursions.  I need to.

And when I want my artwork framed, I’ll go to Arlene’s Art Supplies on Fuller Road.  Or I’ll use JoAnn Fabric at the old Northway Mall.  Or I’ll frequent one of the two Michaels’ Art Supply stores in the area.

I can’t shop at AC Moore, they’re no longer in business.

And I’m done with Hobby Lobby.

Let me explain why I’m done with Hobby Lobby.

I actually liked Hobby Lobby.  They had a great selection of arts and crafts and supplies – nearly everything anyone would need.  If you got past the fact that they weren’t open on Sundays, and that they closed at 8pm most nights … it was a good deal.

They framed my artworks without any problems, they were cordial and helpful and all of the above.

And then COVID-19 hit.  And Hobby Lobby owner David Green demanded that his stores remain open, in that Hobby Lobby founder David Green claims that a prayer vision from his wife commanded that all the stores remain open.

Nice way to treat your employees, David.  Ugh.

Okay, let’s go further.  Apparently God’s vision may run counter to what state governors recommend, and in such cases Hobby Lobby is closing their stores – and permanently laying off their employees.  In Oklahoma, for example, Hobby Lobby laid off 32 of their employees.  Laid off, as in no health coverage, and that a representative would drop off their personal belongings and collect their badges.

And that’s just in Oklahoma.  Nationwide, Hobby Lobby has forced a 10% pay cut on warehouse workers, while at the same time laying off part-time workers.

I totally understand what’s going on here.  Brick-and-mortar businesses are closing throughout the world.  COVID-19 has no desire to shop or to open up credit accounts.  But the extreme callousness of the Green family is absolutely reprehensible.

And when we get back our lives, I will return to shopping as much as I can … but Hobby Lobby will no longer be one of my shopping choices.  I know there were several moral and ethical reasons why people choose to shop at non-Hobby Lobby craft stores, but for me, the way Hobby Lobby treated its hardworking employees was callous and hurtful.  I don’t know how many customers have walked away from them after this, but I’m one of them.

But when we get back our lives, I will definitely buy some clothing and outerwear from Columbia Sportswear.

According to to this CNN report, Columbia Sportswear President / CEO Tim Boyle – who made over $3 million in salary in 2018 – voluntarily reduced his yearly salary to $10,000, to ensure that the many employees at Columbia Sportswear would continue to earn their regular paychecks for the foreseeable future.

This is absolutely incredible.  And an amazing gesture by a company CEO to keep his employees paid during these turbulent times.

So let’s get through this COVID-19 war as thoroughly as we can.

I have a feeling I’ll look sharp in a new Columbia coat.  When I’m shopping at Michael’s or Arlene’s or Jo-Ann.  😀