In December of last year there was a controversy over Lowe’s decision to pull its advertising from the TLC show “All-American Muslim.”
The American Muslim site stated:
“The Islamophobia network was enraged that this program only depicts normal American Muslim families, and doesn’t include terrorists, criminals, perverts, and other types that exist in the Muslim community (as they do in all communities). According to the Islamophobes showing ordinary families constitutes “deception and obfuscation”, an “attempt to manipulate Americans”, “propaganda”, “cultural jihad”.
The Florida Family Association stated:
“Florida Family Association urged advertisers to stop supporting The Learning Channel’s new show All-American Muslim because it appeared to be propaganda designed to counter legitimate and present-day concerns about many Muslims who are advancing Islamic fundamentalism and Sharia law. The show profiled only Muslims that appeared to be ordinary folks while excluding many Islamic believers whose agenda poses a clear and present danger to liberties and traditional values that the majority of Americans cherish. “
I must admit that the accusation of racism has become club to beat down any debate and the classification of disagreements as irrational fears is the next best weapon of choice these days.
I fully acknowledge the complexity of this issue. I’ve recently shared my thoughts that demonizing an entire group of people is dangerous and can only lead to catastrophe. That said, I think what I would like everyone to realize is that there are legitimate concerns about radical Islamists despite what our government and the media have been telling us. And when I first heard about this issue (I don’t watch reality TV much so did not even know about the show) and was told that Lowe’s was pulling its advertisement dollars because it didn’t show Muslims as terrorists my first reaction was that it is probably not that simple.
Maybe what the actual concern is that the dangerous aspects of Islamic fundamentalism and Sharia law are being ignored at best and covered up at worst. Please consider the following to put the issue into perspective:
In November of last year, ACT! for America founder, Bridgitt Gabriel speaks at an anti-Sharia conference in Nashville. (NOTE: this was just one of the speakers, but I think it’s important that you watch this for a couple of reasons. First to become aware of how much our educational institutions are being influenced by Islamic extremists, and second to compare and contrast what is said here with what is said at the Khilafah conference discussed below.)
This conference had originally been scheduled to be held at a Nashville hotel. The hotel cancelled the event. The reasons given were security concerns:
“Our decision has nothing to do about the conference’s content,” Steve Eckley, the senior vice president of hotels for Amerimar Enterprises, the hotel’s parent company. “This has to do with the security of our staff and clients.”
“The hotel’s decision was reportedly praised by the Islamic Center of Nashville, which said the conference would have promoted bigotry.”
So, the hotel cancelled the conference, we can surmise, because of threats of violence. The Islamic Center said it would have promoted bigotry (accusations of bigotry are another favored choice of those who would shut down debate.)
The conference was held at a local Church and as a result they lost one of their speakers, Pamela Geller who stated:
“Geller, who runs the Atlas Shrugs anti-Islam blog, said in an e-mail: “While I have nothing against speaking in a church per se, I refuse to have my message driven from the public square. … Right now I’m more concerned with the marginalization and ghettoizing of our message of freedom. I am not going to consent to the attempts of the left and Islamic supremacists to drive our defense of freedom from public spaces.”
Now consider the Khilafah conference that was held in Chicago in June 2011. Here is one of Hizb ut-Tahrir’s nifty promotional videos:
So, to sum up the situation a group that seeks to destroy this country and all it stands for successfully holds not one, but two conferences. A group that seeks to object to and prevent them from reaching their goals is driven from the public square.
Maybe that is one of the reasons groups like the Florida Family Association objected to the TLC show. When you only see one side of an issue it becomes easier to dismiss or ignore the aspects you probably should be paying attention to.