I am and always have been a political shopper. I didn't buy orange juice from Florida or drink Snapple when Rush Limbaugh endorsed it. I won't buy things made in sweat shops; I want to support American workers as best I can. I don't buy any Krupp or Bayer products because they used concentration camp workers at their plants. And now, I won't shop at Lowe's and neither will many Americans.
Lowe's pulled its advertising from All-American Muslim, a reality show on The Learning Channel. You would think Lowe's did this because of hundreds or thousands who refused to buy their product or shop at their stores, but no, they did this in response to pressure from one organization: the Florida Family Association, a fundamentalist Christian group that claims the program "riskily hides the Islamic agenda's clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional values."
Funny, I wasn't aware that hate, prejudice, and discrimination were traditional values. This from Christians backing a guy for president--Newt Gingrich--who has had three marriages, two divorces, and has committed adultery.
I don't understand why we still hate Muslims. They are approximately 0 .6 percent of the American population. We're far from the terrible events of September 11, Osama bin Laden is dead, and most rational thinking Americans know that Muslims aren't all terrorists anymore than all Christians are abortion clinic bombers.
Why can't we learn from history? Prior to World War II, the Germans first stopped patronizing Jewish shops and businesses, then they made it illegal to shop there, then they closed them down, then they moved the Jews to camps and then….well, you know what they did then, they killed them; they murdered them.
During World War II in our own country we interned Americans who were of Japanese ancestry or anyone who appeared to be Asian.
Next year our Supreme Court will rule on the constitutionality or targeting people in Arizona who "look" illegal (translation: Mexican).
I have a question for you: Do you ask the police what religion they are when they're saving you from potentially being a victim of a crime? Do you ask a firefighter what is their religion when they're carrying you out of a burning building? I didn't think so.
My husband was raised Muslim and his parents are Muslim. Both he and his parents are physicians, and I find it odd that no one asks, when my husband is saving their lives as he does weekly (he is an orthopedic sports and trauma surgeon), what his religion is; they just want him to help them remain alive. No one asked my mother-in-law who, who delivered over 3,000 American babies—who brought forth life--her religion when she was helping them bring their baby into the world. Perhaps the Muslims doctors should start asking the patients what their religion is.
The reality is that Lowe's has the right to advertise when and where they want. But at what point does not advertising on a program that shows us that American Muslims are just like those who aren't Muslim—that they're American—become choice verses discrimination, prejudice, and bigotry?
I used to be a Christian. But it is the hate that groups such as the Florida Family Association, and the hypocrisy of those and other Christian groups have illustrated time and time again that kept me away. Much like Gandhi, I could not find Christ among them.
Perhaps the Florida Family Association should read their Bible and follow the example of the man they claim is their savior: Jesus. I believe he said, "Love your enemy," ( as obviously they perceive Muslims to be) and "Those of you without sin cast the first stone;" just two examples—guess they missed those.
Lowe's does have a right to advertise where it wants. And we have the right to shop where we want. Let us show Lowe's and the Florida Family Association that we love our country, our diversity, our differences; and that we have a First Amendment constitutional right to worship freely, Muslims included.
Stop shopping at Lowe's and show them that the voices of tolerance outweigh the voices of hate; if we don't we're no different than the Nazis or, by the way, the terrorists.
- Read Washington Whispers: TV Hits For Liberals, Conservatives.
- See photos of the Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear.
- Check out our editorial cartoons on the "ground zero mosque" controversy.