Posted by on December 15, 2011 in Blog

Today, Congressman Mike Honda (D-CA), who earlier this week wrote a fantastic op-ed in the Washington Post condemning the King Hearings, has officially weighed in on the controversy surrounding Lowe's decision to pull its advertising from TLC's All-American Muslim. Honda connects the fear-mongering that characterized the King Hearings with the blatant bigotry surrounding the Lowe's controversy, and codemns the manner in which "these misguided actions perpetuate a culture of fear and hysteria that tragically tears America’s social fabric and precipitously damages our national security." 

Read the Congressman's full statement below:

“Muslim-Americans currently face a proverbial catch-22.  When they serve in our military, failed leaders and fear mongers accuse them of being insurgents – a religious enemy within.  Such is the case with Rep. Peter King during his recent “homegrown terrorism hearing” on Capitol Hill.  When Muslim-Americans are shown to have traditional all-American family values, as depicted on the reality T.V. show All-American Muslim, they are attacked for misrepresenting the “dangerous and radical truth” of their religion.  Such is the case with the Florida Family Association’s coercion of a major American company, Lowe’s Home Improvement, to pull advertisements from All American Muslim.  These misguided actions perpetuate a culture of fear and hysteria that tragically tears America’s social fabric and precipitously damages our national security.

Placing value judgments on the morality and patriotism of a large group of people, based on the actions of a few, is a nonsensical juxtaposition.  Not only is Rep. King and Florida Family’s anti-Muslim Islamophobic sentiment laughable, it is also a backwards, narrow-minded assault on basic American values.  Rather than learning from our nation’s past mistakes, from the exclusion of people of color and women from voting rights, to the internment of Japanese Americans in World War II, we now have companies such as Lowe’s undermining our nation’s core, cherished value of inclusion by rubberstamping hatred. It’s tragic that the words of a radical, right-wing Florida group are being used to darken the faith, contribution, dedication and patriotism of all Muslim-Americans.

Most worrisome is the fact that Rep. Peter King and Florida family’s ignorance and hatred are spreading.  Most, recently, Kayak.com, the online travel site, pulled their advertisements from All American Muslim.  The fear mongering and hatred must stop now.  Fair-minded Americans everywhere must stand up for the immutable truth that the protection and promotion of all cultures and religious beliefs is a precious cornerstone of the American way of life.  We must fight intolerance and ignorance wherever and whenever it appears.  Doing so is the most American thing any one of us can do.”

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