Rabbi Marc Schneier and Russell Simmons, president and chairman of The Foundation for Ethnic Understanding have called on advertisers on TLC unscripted series All-American Muslim to spurn a demand by the Florida Family Association and other anti-Muslim groups that they drop their advertising support for the series.
Rabbi Schneier and Simmons condemned as “caving in to bigotry” a decision by Lowe’s Home Improvement, Inc. to pull its advertising from All-American Muslim, a program which has won critical acclaim from the New York Times, Time Magazine and USA Today and many other media as offering a balanced look at the lives of five families in the heavily Muslim community of Dearborn, Michigan. Rabbi Schneier and Simmons urged other major advertisers on the program like T-Mobile, Walmart, Amway, T-Mobile and Home Depot not to follow in Lowe’s footsteps.
According to Rabbi Schneier; “We are each morally responsible for every wrong we have the power to prevent and fail to prevent.” He added, “For high-profile advertisers to accede to pressure to pull their advertising from a program that accurately portrays Muslim-Americans as loyal and productive American citizens would be to cravenly surrender to a highly sophisticated campaign aimed at demonizing all Muslims. The hate campaign launched against “All-American Muslim violates basic American values of tolerance and inclusiveness and represents a threat to the well-being not only of Muslim-Americans, but of all Americans. If one group can be successfully marginalized today simply because of its faith, the same tactics can be employed tomorrow against other religious and ethnic groups.”
Urging all people of good will to sign an on-line petition at www.signon.org which already has received thousands of signatures appealing to advertisers on All-American Muslim not to pull their advertising, Schneier said, “As the 18th Century philosopher Edmund Burke said, “All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. This is a moment when people of conscience should come together and say, “We will not stand idly by and allow the merchants of hatred and bigotry to take over the public square through tactics of intimidation. America is better than this.”