Lowe's Meets Clergymen But Stands Firm
Petitions carrying the names of some 200,000 people protesting against Lowe's decision to pull its commercials from TLC's All-American Muslim were delivered to Lowe's executives by faith leaders in Charlotte, NC on Wednesday. But the company refused to reverse its decision. After meeting with the representatives of the groups, Lowe's told the Charlotte Observer that, contrary to reports, its decision was not the result of a letter-writing campaign by the Florida Family Association. Tom Lamb, the company's marketing chief, maintained that the decision to pull the ads was made before it became aware of the FFA's protest. Company spokesperson Chris Ahearn said that the decision was made after it became aware of "negative chatter" about the show that appeared on social networks. She said that the company routinely pulls ads from shows that it deems controversial. The Rev. Russ Dean of the Park Road Baptist Church in Charlotte, one of the clergymen who met with Lowe's executives, said after the meeting that the group "respect[s] their business decision" and praised the company for its willingness to discuss the matter with them. "There's a way to engage in responsible dialogue, even when we think we have a deep disagreement," he said. Meanwhile, the controversy has failed to increase the audience for All-American Muslim . Quite the contrary. Daily Variety reported today (Thursday), that Sunday's episode saw ratings plummet 30 percent from the previous week.