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Nawal and Nader Aoude, some of the stars of the new Muslim television show
“All-American Muslim” a new program on The Learning Channel that is being touted as a “powerful series” that carries viewers “inside the rarely seen world of American Muslims,” is being dropped by advertisers.
Critics say the program is nothing more than video jihad propaganda, and officials with the Florida Family Association say they are contacting companies whose advertising appears on the show to ask them to quit. So far, 18 of 20 companies contacted have done so, officials said.
The organization said among the companies that initially supported the program, but later did not have any advertising aired, were Airborne Vitamin, Amway, Diamond Foods, Dyson Vacuum, Estee Lauder, HTC Phones, Home Depot, McDonald’s, Petsmart, Pfizer, Sears, Sonic, T-Mobil and Wal-Mart.
The Florida group said it sent out an email alert to constituents only a week ago, and they then contacted the sponsors.
“The Learning Channel’s new show ‘All-American Muslim’ is propaganda clearly designed to counter legitimate and present-day concerns about many Muslims who are advancing Islamic fundamentalism and Shariah law,” the organization’s report on its work said. “The show profiles only Muslims that appear to be ordinary folks while excluding many Islamic believers whose agenda poses a clear and present danger to liberties and traditional values that the majority of Americans cherish.”
The association cited as a “troubling scene” when a Muslim police officer stated, “I really am American. No ifs, ands or buts about it.”
“This scene would appear to be damage control for the Dearborn [Mich.] police who have arrested numerous Christians including several former Muslims for peacefully preaching Christianity,” the association report said.
“Dearborn police falsely arrested Nabeel Qureshi and Paul Rezkalla in 2010 and Sudanese Christian Pastor George Saieg in 2009 for preaching Christianity at the annual Arab International Festival,” the report said.
The association’s suggested message from consumers to sponsors said the show is trying to manipulate Americans into ignoring the threat of jihad and Shariah, which is Islamic religious law.
The report said Dearborn is one of the most densely populated Muslim communities in the United States and it the site of the biggest mosque in North America. In recent years, it has gained national attention for taking a pro-Muslim stance and for the arrest and intimidation of Christian evangelists for engaging in protected speech activity, the report said.
In fact, the Thomas More Law Center, a national public interest law firm, has handled several legal disputes over the arrests of those individuals.
“But Americans aren’t suspicious of Muslims who are trying to get married, open clubs, and play football. Americans are suspicious of Muslims who are trying to blow up American buildings, subvert American freedoms, and assert the primacy of Islamic law over American law. The problem people have with Islam is not with every Muslim person. It is with Islam’s teachings of violence against and the subjugation of unbelievers. It is with the supremacist ideology and the fervent believers in those noxious doctrines of warfare and subjugation,” the report said.
The program launched earlier this month on the TLC Cable Channel.
The producers went to Dearborn, the U.S. city that has the highest concentration of Muslims in the United States, and a producer who declined to be named told WND the stories focus on people.
“Ultimately, our shows are about telling the stories of the families featured in them. So, to some extent, the history of American Muslims settling in Dearborn may be touched upon, but ultimately, this is about the families’ stories and what’s going on in their lives today, not the past, per se,” the producer said.
But Islam analyst Pamela Geller told WND earlier that perspective on the show is also its danger.
“Clearly this program is designed to counter the fictional threat of ‘Islamophobia’ by showing Muslims who aren’t terrorist monsters, but ordinary people living ordinary lives, balancing tradition and modern life, dealing with their families, their jobs, and a host of other issues,” Geller said.
“It is an attempt to manipulate Americans into ignoring the threat of jihad and to bully them into thinking that being concerned about the jihad threat would somehow victimize these nice people in this show. The problem is not people; it’s ideology. The show doesn’t address that,” Geller said.
Jerry Newcombe, Truth in Action Ministries’ senior producer and analyst, says the major problem with the program is that it’s not going to show the reality of “pure Islam.”
“It’s a free country. Muslims are free to practice their religion here (thanks to Christianity, ultimately). What is sad, though, is that the truth about the goals of radical Islam are hidden from many Americans through programs like the one on TLC. Islam wants to take over the world. If they have to use force, they’ll do that. But otherwise, they’ll do it by what Robert Spencer calls ‘stealth jihad,'” Newcombe said.
A line from one of the first two episodes illustrates what both Geller and Newcombe are describing, when one of Muslim women says in a panel discussion, “We live our lives just like anyone else.”
That perception is one of the reasons why Jihad Watch publisher and Executive Director Robert Spencer shares the concerns expressed by Geller and Newcombe.
Spencer says the program is attempting to produce a neutral view of Islam.
“The show apparently is trying to show that Muslims go to clubs, like to have fun, etc. But this doesn’t really establish anything,” Spencer said.
“The problem people have with Islam is its teachings of violence against and the subjugation of unbelievers. The problem is not with every Muslim person. It is with the supremacist ideology and the fervent believers in those noxious doctrines of warfare and subjugation,” Spencer also said.