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Ellison Critical of Lowe's for Pulling Ads From Muslim Reality TV Show

The representative said corporate America needs to "take a stand" against bigotry.

Add Rep. Keith Ellison to the growing list of people criticizing home improvement retailer Lowe's for pulling ads from a reality TV show called "All-American Muslim."

The new TLC show looks at the everyday life of five Muslim-American families living in Dearborn, MI. According to a City Pages blog post, the Florida Family Association—which claims the show is "propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic agenda"—has called on retailers to pull their ads from the program.

Lowe's did just that, which has triggered a wave of backlash. Ellison, who became the first Muslim ever elected to Congress in 2006, released the following critical statement on Sunday:

“Lowe's Corporation has chosen to uphold the beliefs of a fringe hate group and not the creed of The First Amendment, which guarantees the free exercise of religion. This is disappointing since the success of 'All-American Muslim' shows how ready the country is to learn about Muslims as Americans. This probably makes hate mongers uncomfortable--as they should be. Our nation's history is full of examples demonstrating how we have repeatedly torn down false divisions hate groups choose to create. But the struggle against bigotry and hatred must continue so we never give in to intolerance like Lowe's Corporation has done. Corporate America needs to take a stand against these anti-Muslim fringe groups and stand up for what is right because this is what it means to be an American."

Lowe's has since released an apology on its Facebook page, although the company has said it plans on sticking with its decision to pull the ads, according to the Associated Press.

The AP also reports that California Sen. Ted Lieu is considering calling for a boycott of Lowe's, while actor Kal Penn has been directing people to sign an online petition. The petition has more than 11,000 signatures as of 5 p.m. Monday.

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