Courage, cowardice, and TLC’S ‘All-American Muslim’

IT HAS BEEN  deeply amusing to see companies twist themselves into knots to explain why they pulled ads from TLC’s “All-American Muslim’’ — specifically, why caving to a miniscule group of religious extremists does not, by definition, make them companies that cave to a miniscule group of religious extremists.

“We have a strong commitment to diversity and inclusion,’’ went a post on the Lowe’s Facebook page. Meanwhile, the CEO of Kayak.com wrote a blog post insisting that “we’re not bigots.’’ Rather, they’re just uncourageous: “We do try to avoid advertising on shows that may produce controversy, whether we support the content or not.’’

I’m still wondering where Kayak.com stands on the rest of the TLC lineup, which includes such shows as “The Virgin Diaries,’’ “Sister Wives,’’ and “Hoarding: Buried Alive.’’ I just watched a promo for an episode of “Strange Addiction,’’ in which a woman dips her fingers into her dead husband’s urn and eats the ashes.

By contrast, “All-American Muslim’’ is so milquetoast that it’s practically sleep-inducing. There’s a strong case to be made that “All-American Muslim’’ is TLC’s most benign show in years, and also its most useful.
Read the full column from the Boston Globe here. (Links are free!)
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