Editor,

While out to get groceries, I noticed a Hobby Lobby is coming to Bridgepointe Parkway. With all the stressors in our lives right now — COVID-19, shelter in place, politics — it’s tough to worry about more, yet I feel it’s important to call out Hobby Lobby because its wrongdoings are widespread and impactful. With its move into our community, these won’t just be abstract concerns, but things that could meaningfully affect our lives.

Hobby Lobby has a long history of mistreating its employees and worsening the social fabric of our country. During shelter-in-place orders in Colorado, Ohio, Wisconsin and Indiana, it refused to close stores and put hundreds of workers’ lives in danger. When forced to cease operations, it laid off those workers with no support. They’ve refused to cover contraceptive care for their female employees under their insurance (yet covered vasectomies for men), taking their case all the way to the Supreme Court.

Is this really a company we want doing business in our city? It sets a horrible precedent for the area, and were it not for shelter-in-place orders there would likely be active protests as there have been in other cities. We must remember our ethical responsibilities to one another as neighbors and citizens, even during challenging times. I urge you to contact members of the City Council (cityofsanmateo.org/166/Meet-Your-Council) and ask them to take action. Hobby Lobby is bad for all of us. 

Jessie Hough

San Mateo

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(13) comments

KweefLatina

Governments actually do have the ability to prevent businesses from moving in. If you sincerely doubt this, call up the zoning board and tell them you want to build a gas station next to a playground, or put an auto body shop across the street from an apartment complex. After that you can go argue about whether dinosaurs are real and the shape of the planet.

Considering what's happened to every other hobby store in the area, I'm all in favor of Hobby Lobby wasting their money to move in next to Target in the middle of a pandemic. It's going to be hilarious.

ElenaC

Chick-Fil-A has officially stopped donating to anti-LGBT causes, mostly due to the opposition they were getting in Redwood City and San Jose. San Jose installed rainbow flags right next to their location at the airport to show exactly how welcome the Chicken Christians were there. Hobby Lobby knowingly funded terrorism by smuggling stolen artifacts from the Middle East for their joke of a museum. A lot of people only know about their refusal to provide birth control. So we need to get the word out, as loudly and ceaselessly as possible: the money you spend will be used to fund terrorism. If you can scoff at murdered Americans, if you’re seriously able to say that doesn’t matter to you, then I suggest you ask the owners of Hobby Lobby what the afterlife will be like. And also, to the guy who asked what right the letter writer has to object to a business opening in her community: EVERY RIGHT. This country allows its ordinary citizens to participate in their local government pretty extensively. Every project approval City Council passes is first subjected to several public meetings with ordinary residents. American freedom is NOT demonstrated by unrestrained corporate interests. It exists in the ability of ordinary people to hold the wealthy and the powerful accountable to ordinary people. We shall see if it’s just two or three people in San Mateo who believe that funding terrorism is acceptable here. Stand up and be counted.

Christopher Conway

look forward to being your opposition, just try to stop this business from moving in. You will be met with Americans who feel much different then you.

Rolandtorres

Welcome Hobby Lobby! A Walmart in the area would be fantastic too

Lou

Welcome Hobby Lobby! A search of their employees shows they love working there. It provides wonderful product and service, else they would not be in business. An uplifting, fun store and welcome addition to our community.

Tafhdyd

The best way to deal with companies or businesses is to speak with the dollar. Take your business elsewhere when you don't like them.

Terence Y

Okay, but if you stop Hobby Lobby from opening up then you need to get rid of AutoZone, Boeing, Bath & Body Works, Charles Schwab, Verizon and anyone else donating to Planned Parenthood, since they are all guilty of attempted murder and accessories to murder. Don't you think murder is worse than mistreating employees? Don't you think murder worsens the social fabric of our country?

JME

What deaths matter to you?

Thomas Morgan

I would like a Chick Fil A in the old Red Robin.

Terence Y

Red Robin at Bridgepointe is permanently closed? I was there in early March and I thought it was just temporarily closed due to the Wuhan virus. If it's closed, I agree a Chick Fil A is a very good choice. Wonder what's happening at Bridgepointe - they've had a lot of closures in the past few years.

Christopher Conway

Jessie- who are you again to say a business should or should not be located in our area? I forgot, were you elected to talk for the rest of the people in your community about what is OK and what is not? Last time I checked we live in America were the tyranny of a few can't stop the freedoms of the individual. Ask Supervisor Canepa on how it feels to get the backlash when he tried to prevent Chik-Fil-A from opening in Redwood City.

ElenaC

I know I’ve already commented on this, but I was rereading your own comment, and so I’m adding another. 1. Hough is a registered voter and a taxpayer in San Mateo, which is exactly who gets a say over what businesses get to operate here. That’s why we all get letters addressed “To Our Neighbor,” asking us to attend meetings about proposed changes. 2. The letter writer failed to win a seat on the San Mateo Board of Moral Values, true. It’s been a while since local officials have lectured us common folk on what’s good for us, so we’re just flying blind here. 3. Last time I checked, America is a democracy, which is defined as government by majority rule; which is literally the few outweighing the individual. So maybe check again. I can’t understand how you seem to understand the way things are run. Did you understand that by your own rules, you have no right to be talking here to the rest of us, either? Who elected you? Also, I heard Canepa was pleased as punch when ChickFilA eliminated its support of anti-LGBT organizations in response to the Bay Area’s opposition to its business here. You should ask him.

Christopher Conway

Keep trying to stop businesses that you don't agree with, we will keep fighting you all the way down the line. You, nor the letter writer nor government has any ability to prevent a business from moving in. One day people like you will understand private property and I look forward to any protest regarding Hobby Lobby as I will be the one at the protest denouncing you and the letter writer.

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