Monday, December 12, 2011

Lowes Drops the Ball...

My views on Islam are complicated, and conflicted. That is a painfully honest admission. My views on religious freedom and everyone’s inherent right to worship as they choose are not. Our country came to be because a group of people were fleeing religious persecution in their own country. Religious freedom is so important that it is covered in two amendments the 1st and the 14th. The 1st guarantees the free exercise of religion. The 14th prohibits discrimination and guarantees equal protection of the laws for every person, including on the basis of religious beliefs. The founding fathers thought that was pretty important.

Lowes, a big box hardware/materials store, portrays itself as an All-American store. Their advertising is big on red, white, and blue and patriotism (at least during the patriotic holidays). It is a great store with a huge selection. If you can’t find it at Lowes it probably doesn’t exist. OK that may be a bit of an exaggeration but I think I made my point. Indeed, the chain of stores is a monument to capitalism and the principles of American ingenuity. So I was astounded to read that they decided to pull their advertising for a TV show that depicts hard working American families on the Learning Channel. You would think any corporation would be chomping at the bit to put their name to a show that depicts the societal norm for families. A mother, a father, and children all living under one roof in a "traditional" family atmosphere on TV is a rarity. Likewise, you would think the "family values" folks would be singing the praises of an actual family doing family things on TV. Especially in an age that portrays "reality" as drunks living in a beach house, children objectified in pageants,and Kardashians being Kardashians.

Apparently "family values" actually means "family values as long as you don’t call God Allah". Or, in other words, religious freedom is cool as long as you are not Muslim. It saddens me to see that in this day and age a hate group disguised as a quasi religious/political organization can influence a company like Lowes. It is truly reminiscent of the days when the Klan controlled municipalities with their message of hate disguised as Christianity.

The Florida Family Association is a "Christian" organization whose main purpose is to bash homosexuality. Apparently they think being gay is a sin. They also think being Muslim is a sin. David Caton, their executive director, is a self admitted porn addict who was "cured" by praying. He spends all his time perusing TV shows to make sure they are wholesome. When he finds something he deems not wholesome he gets his followers to bug advertisers to pull advertising on these unwholesome networks. The funny thing is Islam also forbids homosexuality, and porn. Hate is hate, and the Florida Family Association is without a doubt a hate group of the highest order. For Lowes to comply with their message of hate speaks volumes of the people that run that company.

We are ALL endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights...among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. I did not see any footnotes listing exceptions in that part of the Declaration of Independence! If happiness is two dudes cuddled up on a couch in a home they share, then who are they to decide that that is wrong? If happiness is spending time with your family reading the Q'uran, and attending services at the Mosque, then who are they to decide that is wrong? Who is ANYONE to decide that is wrong? It really is not even a question of tolerance, but common sense. Our forefathers set forth the principles that this country was founded on. People have fought, and died defending those principles. They should be defended across the board without exception. Shame on Lowes for bowing to hate, and bigotry. I wont be spending any of my money with Lowes anymore, and I encourage everyone to do the same.

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