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Tue December 13, 2011
The fracas over Lowe's and TLC's "All-American Muslim," Conyers steps in
Michigan Representative John Conyers (D-Dearborn) says Lowe's Companies, Inc. should "unequivocally apologize" after the company pulled its ads from the reality show "All-American Muslim." Lowe's pulled the ads after it received pressure from the Florida Family Association.
TLC's reality show examines life as a Muslim American.
It follows the life of five Muslim-American families in Dearborn and "the misconceptions and conflicts these families face outside and within their own community." The show's website depicts the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn.
In a letter trying to get companies to pull their ads for the show, the Florida Family Association said the show is propaganda and is "attempting to manipulate Americans into ignoring the threat of jihad."
Lowe's capitulated and pulled their advertising. Now Lowe's Companies, Inc. is facing the anger of those who say the company caved into the very intolerance the reality show is trying to expose.
From Congressman Conyers statement:
“I am disappointed that a company like Lowe’s would fall prey to the intolerance and fundamentally un-American values preached by a small, but vocal minority. Lowe’s Companies, Inc. should unequivocally apologize to the Muslim and Arab American community and strongly repudiate the intolerant messages espoused by anti-Muslim groups. ”
Lowe's has apologized for pulling the ads on their Facebook page, but they don't say they'll reinstate their advertising:
It appears that we managed to step into a hotly contested debate with strong views from virtually every angle and perspective – social, political and otherwise – and we’ve managed to make some people very unhappy. We are sincerely sorry. We have a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, across our workforce and our customers, and we’re proud of that longstanding commitment.
Lowe’s has received a significant amount of communication on this program, from every perspective possible. Individuals and groups have strong political and societal views on this topic, and this program became a lighting rod for many of those views. As a result we did pull our advertising on this program. We believe it is best to respectfully defer to communities, individuals and groups to discuss and consider such issues of importance.
We strongly support and respect the right of our customers, the community at large, and our employees to have different views. If we have made anyone question that commitment, we apologize.
Thank you for allowing us to further explain our position
Meanwhile California Senator Ted Lieu is considering calling for a boycott of Lowe's, and the Florida Family Association says their website is being attacked.