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The home improvement chain store Lowes is in hot water over a decision to pull its advertising from TLC’s All American Muslim. What may have been a choice made in an effort to appease one group of people, could prove to be a major public relations problem for the business.
TLC’s All American Muslim is an eight-part series that premiered last month and follows “the daily lives of five American Muslim families in Dearborn, Michigan.” From the sound of it, the series aims to showcase the reality of being a Muslim family in America. Apparently, part of that reality may include disapproval from family organizations who feel a show like this is “propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic agenda’s clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional values.” This, according to what the L.A. Times, quoted the Florida Family Association said in their complaint against TLC’s series. From that snippet, it doesn’t sound like the First Amendment is as high on this organization’s list of American liberties worth supporting as it is on the Constitution, but that’s neither here nor there at the moment. The big story is that Lowes responded to the complaints by pulling their advertising from the series.
According to the Times, California state senator Ted Lieu is calling for an apology from Lowes CEO Robert A. Niblock for pulling their advertising, calling his decision “bigoted, shameful, and un-American,” as well as “profoundly ignorant.”
Lowes posted a statement on their Facebook page apologizing for making people unhappy. The statement goes on to say...
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.
This seems like something they should have considered strongly before agreeing to advertise with the show in the first place. Lowes is a business and it’s their call to decide when and where they put their advertising. It’s probably safe to assume they thought it was the better call to pull their ads in response to the complaints about the series, but it might not be looking so good for them now as people react to their decision, which does seem to take a side on the issue.