How Lowe's Walked Into a Morality War

The group that forced the store to pull its ads has waged a solitary war against everything from Playboy to MTV to Nickelodeon, Jamilah King writes in a blog entry at ColorLines.

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"All-American Muslim" panel (Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

Jamilah King, in a blog entry at ColorLines, checks in on Lowe's decision to pull ads for TLC's reality show All-American Muslim. She writes that the decision put the big-box home-improvement chain at the center of a morality war against sex, gays and Muslims. It also threatens to wipe out the chain's past diversity efforts, she writes.

This week’s uproar seems to be a monumental victory for [David] Caton [whose Florida Family Association started the campaign against All-American Muslim], who has waged a deeply personal and largely solitary war against everything from Playboy to MTV to Nickleodeon. Though his organization claims to have a membership of over 35,000, Caton is the only paid staff person. 

In the Florida Family Association’s own list of nearly 150 “accomplishments” since 2000, the overwhelming majority are actions taken against the porn industry. For instance, in 2002 the group wrote that it “influenced” nearly 2,300 Circle K stores to stop selling pornographic magazines. In 2003, the group boasts that it developed PornCrawler, computer software that allowed users to identify websites that placed unrestricted porn on the Internet.

Alongside its crusade against the porn industry, the Florida Family Foundation has waged a steady war against what it calls “special rights for homosexuals.” On its website, the group brags about its effort to influence Florida’s legislature to oppose pro-LGBT bills. In anticipation of last summer’s Gay Day at Disney’s Magic Kingdom in Orlando, FFA spent $7,000 to hire a pilot to fly an airplane banner near the event that read “Warning Gay Day at Disney 6/4.” The effort was to warn Central Floridians about the “thousands of homosexuals” going to the park to “celebrate their immoral lifestyles,” the group later wrote on its website.

That such a fringe character could have such a large influence doesn’t come as a surprise for Muslim rights advocates.

Read Jamilah King's entire blog entry at ColorLines.

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