LOS ANGELES (AP) -- A state senator from Southern California was considering calling for a boycott of Lowe's stores after the home improvement chain pulled its advertising from a reality show about Muslim-Americans.
Calling the retail giant's decision "un-American" and "naked religious bigotry," Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, said Sunday he would also consider legislative action if Lowe's doesn't apologize to Muslims and reinstate its ads. The senator sent a letter outlining his complaints to Lowe's Chief Executive Officer Robert A. Niblock.
The retail giant stopped advertising on TLC's "All-American Muslim" after a group called the Florida Family Association complained the show was "propaganda that riskily hides the Islamic agenda's clear and present danger to American liberties and traditional values."
The program premiered last month and chronicles the lives of five families from Dearborn, Mich., a Detroit suburb with a large Muslim and Arab-American population.
"The show is about what it's like to be a Muslim in American, and it touches on the discrimination they sometimes face. And that kind of discrimination is exactly what's happening here with Lowe's," Lieu said.
The Florida group sent three emails to its members, asking them to petition Lowe's to pull its advertising.
Lowe's issued a statement Sunday apologizing for having "managed to make some people very unhappy." The North Carolina-based company did not say whether it would reinstate advertising on the show.
The apology doesn't go far enough, Lieu said. The senator vowed to look into whether Lowe's violated any California laws and said he would also consider drafting a senate resolution condemning the company's actions.
"We want to raise awareness so that consumers will know during this holiday shopping season that Lowe's is engaging in religious discrimination," he said.
In addition to an apology and reinstatement of the ads, Lieu said he hoped Lowe's would make an outreach to the community about bias and bigotry.
"Individuals and groups have strong political and societal views on this topic, and this program became a lightning rod for many of those views," the Lowe's statement said. "As a result we did pull our advertising on this program. We believe it is best to respectfully defer to communities, individuals and groups to discuss and consider such issues of importance."