New York City -- Lowe's Home Improvement is facing a backlash in the wake of its decision to stop advertising on a reality show about American Muslims. About 40 local and national Muslim and Arab-American leaders from around the nation are expected to participate Monday evening in a conference call to discuss the decision by the home improvement chain to pull its ads from the cable show "All-American Muslim,” The Detroit News reported.
"A possible boycott is on the table but that would be a collective decision by various leaders," said Dawud Walid, the executive director of CAIR-MI, the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
Lowe's canceled its ads after getting what it said was a "significant amount of communication" about the show. But the chain did not address reports that its decision was influenced by the conservative group Florida Family Association, which described the show as "propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic agenda's clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional values." The sent three emails to its members, asking them to petition Lowe's to pull its advertising.
The program details the lives of five suburban families from Dearborn, Mich., a Detroit suburb with a large Muslim and Arab-American population.
Calling the Lowe's decision "un-American" and "naked religious bigotry," Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, told The Associated Press he would also consider legislative action if Lowe's doesn't apologize to Muslims and reinstate its ads.
The senator sent a letter outlining his complaints to Lowe's CEO Robert A. Niblock.
"The show is about what it's like to be a Muslim in America, and it touches on the discrimination they sometimes face. And that kind of discrimination is exactly what's happening here with Lowe's," Lieu said.
Lowe's issued a statement in response to the controversy. "Individuals and groups have strong political and societal views on this topic, and this program became a lightning rod for many of those views," the statement said. "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."