ALLEN PARK (WWJ) – Amid the holiday shopping in Allen Park, protestors — both Christian and Muslim — gathered to picket Lowe’s over the company’s decision to pull ads from a Muslim reality show.
WWJ’s Stephanie Davis was live on the scene, where about 200 people were protesting against the home improvement store that last week announced they were pulling advertising from the TLC show “All-American Muslim.” The show centers around five families who live in Dearborn.
Pastor Charles Adams, with Hartford Memorial Baptist Church in Detroit, was among the crowd at the Lowe’s on Outer Drive in Allen Park.
“Lowe’s has the right to do what they want to do, but we also have the right to oppose any policy, any law, any act or attitude that is not loving,” said Adams.
Council on American Islamic Relations spokesman Dawud Walid was also among those protesting against Lowe’s.
“There are a lot of people who are Muslims and Arabs that were shopping at Lowe’s, so those may have calculated a decision that they honor the business of bigots more than us,” said Walid.
About 30 counter-protesters also showed up Saturday morning, saying they came to support Lowe’s. Fred German even drove all the way from Dundee to be there.
“I’m standing in support of an American company doing what it wishes with its American dollars,” said German.
Pat Jackson from Clarkston said she was there because of freedom, not religion.
“Freedom to begin a business, operate a business, hire people, create jobs and advertise that business is in jeopardy because someone decided to make it an issue,” said Clarkston.
Protestors like Jackson were few in number however, as the protest turned into Christianity versus Islam for some on both sides.
“My God has a son named Jesus Christ. I’m sorry yours doesn’t,” shouted one man who was defending Lowe’s.
“A lot of christian people don’t realize the Muslim people believe in Jesus and he is recognized as a prophet, but not the son of God. That’s actually more than what Jewish people think of him,” said one woman who was protesting against Lowe’s.
Executives with the Mooresville, N.C.-based company say the show became a “lightning rod for people to voice complaints,” and said they acted after complaints from the conservative Christian group the Florida Family Association.
Lowe’s reportedly told the association that the show doesn’t meet their advertising guidelines.