Lowe's has responded to the backlash it received after pulling advertising from "All-American Muslim". Through its official Facebook page, the U.S.-based chain of retail home improvement and appliance stores says it is "sincerely sorry" for making "some people very unhappy" with its move.
Though so, Lowe's stands by its decision to yank the ads, reasoning that it "has received a significant amount of communication on this program, from every perspective possible." The company goes on explaining, "Individuals and groups have strong political and societal views on this topic, and this program became a lighting rod for many of those views."
Making it clear that Lowe's respects people's right to have different views, the company says in the statement, "We have a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion, across our workforce and our customers, and we're proud of that longstanding commitment." It adds, "If we have made anyone question that commitment, we apologize."
Following the daily lives of five Lebanese American Muslim families in Dearborn, Michigan, "All-American Muslim" has been accused by the Florida Family Association to be propaganda. Lowe's, however, sparked an outcry from the show's defenders after pulling its ads from the TLC reality program.
California Sen. Ted Lieu has said he is considering calling for a boycott of Lowe's Cos., while U.S. Representative Keith Ellison of Minnesota condemned Lowe's for choosing "to uphold the beliefs of a fringe hate group and not the creed of the First Amendment."
Some celebrities have also reacted to Lowe's move, with hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons slamming the hardware giant. "This can't happen in America; [Lowe's] needs to fix this immediately," so he said. The co-founder of Def Jam later purchased two 30-second ads on the show, but has not decided what the content of those ads would be.
Actor Kal Penn, meanwhile, directed his Twitter followers to an online petition in support of "All-American Muslim". The petition asks people to "stand up against the bigots of the anti-Islam/Islamophobia industry."