The news is coming fast and furious, with more and more prominent celebrities, politicians and activists – Muslims and non-Muslim — tweeting, facebooking and writing about their anger at Lowes pulling its advertisements from TLC’s “All-American Muslims.” It’s amazing at how fast this outrage and anger has grown against the anti-Muslim groups (like the Florida Family Association) who have targeted this program, and against businesses (namely Lowes) who have pulled their advertising from the program due to pressure from these groups.
We all know hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons is furious and putting all his power and weight against Lowes and supporting “All-American Muslim.” But the extent of his support was evidenced in a tweet he sent out this afternoon, where he wrote: “@Uncle Rush: Just purchased remaining spots for #allamericanmuslim for next week The show is now sold out! keep your money@lowes and we will keep ours”
I emailed and called Simmons’ office to confirm this, and they did. Simmons has indeed purchased all the available advertising slots for next week’s episode of “All-American Muslim” to show his support for the show and that the tactics of anti-Muslim groups and businesses who pull their advertising won’t hurt the show.
If this doesn’t confirm how universal this issue is, then I don’t know what does. Sami H. Elmansoury, who serves on the Immigrant Rights Task Force for the Office of the Borough President of Manhattan and as an invited member of the Generation Change initiative for the United States Department of State, wrote:
So if there was ever a moment to say “enough” to those who continuously question how “American” you, I, or your neighbor is – I believe that this can be it. Now is the time to throw un-American, hate-mongering bigotry back into the hole from which it disturbingly emerges every few decades. We are all in this together as Americans — whether we are Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Atheist – whomever we are, and whatever belief system we espouse. And, while we must strive to protect the homeland, together, we are one country. Personally, I will continue to work throughout my life to see that we remain that way.
This afternoon, actress Mia Farrow tweeted in support of the boycott against Lowes is urging people to sign the SignOn petition. Actor Kal Penn (of the drama “House” and the “Harold and Kumar” movies) also tweeted, urging people to sign the petition. I heard that Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn) is on board and drafted a statement (that I haven’t seen yet), and Sen. Ted Lieu (a state senator from California) has issued a statement calling out Lowes and anti-Muslim groups who are targeting the TLC program.
And while all this is happening, another episode aired last night. And, it was a good one, full of the things that American Muslims struggle with, things that Americans struggle with.