All American Muslims Remember 9/11

January 1st, 2012 at 12:00 am | 21 Comments |

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Like those of a previous generation remembering November 22, 1963 or December 7, 1941, most of us alive today will never forget “where we were” that dark day ten years ago, when the world changed.

But TLC’s controversial All-American Muslim series rings in the New Year with a provocative new telecast (10pm Eastern and Pacific on most cable systems) on Jan. 1st, which gives its cast of Midwestern Muslim believers a chance to look back on Black Tuesday from their own very unique perspective. On the day that, as one put it, “I realized that people [started looking] at me as less American.”

The clip I have seen shows Deputy Mike Jaafar (who participated in a 9/11 tenth-anniversary memorial tribute at Tiger Stadium), agonizing over the deaths of so many of his brothers and sisters that day — brother and sister police officers and firefighters, that is.

Other participants, though, tired of 9/11 being used as an excuse for what they feel to be jingoism and/or anti-Islamic hate speech, were distinctly less inclined to do anything other than try to forget the day of infamy.

All-American Muslim, which we earlier reviewed here, has attracted sponsor-boycott controversy (particularly from the Lowe’s store chain), in reaction to what some people (ironically enough, many of them religious fundamentalists of a different sort) feel is a glamorous whitewash of a radical religion. But whatever one’s personal beliefs, Sunday night’s show might be a thought-provoking way to start off the new year, against the reruns and after the run-out sports events, to see the day that defined the past decade (at least until the financial collapse) through an entirely new set of eyes.

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21 Comments so far ↓

  • Clayman

    Will definitely watch. Happy New Year

  • rbottoms


    I think you mean boycotted by religious bigots and racists.

    I thought the show was about people as American as my family, who just happened to believe they could exercise their freedom of religion.

    • LauraNo

      Nope, you thought wrong. Only some of us are ‘real’ Americans and the rest of us are barely tolerated.

    • jakester

      You mean like the Somalis we welcomed here who then returned to their homeland to explode themselves or the successful Pakistani immigrant who almost blew up Times Square, all in the name of Allah? Just like all the rest of the immigrants here, don’t they all do it?

      • Primrose

        So your contention is that the behavior of one or two people tars an entire community? So all people on the right are terrorists because of Timothy McVeigh? All people who oppose abortion are terrorists because of the doctors killed? All conservative christians are terrorists because more than a few have gotten on the FBI watch list?

  • jakester

    TLC is a waste can of a channel, all mindless reality shows about fat people or lowlifes who build choppers. As lame as the Palin show was, it was class compared to most of their usual dreck. Sounds like a good place for this sort of cheer leading sort of tripe. I mean, after 9/11, when people of her religion, in the name of her religion, committed such a heinous attack, can she show a bit of understanding why the rest of our country would be a bit more suspicious?

    Yeah, lets play it safe and stick to bashing conservative Christians, preferable just the white American ones. After all, didn’t they just blow up a bunch of Muslims to celebrate Xmas in Nigeria or did I confuse the story?

    • rbottoms

      Oh, where ever will Christians find a place to worship in peace in Barrack Stalin’s America.

      Democracy’s over I tells ya.

      • jakester

        I just hate being lectured about the US’s lack of tolerance and bigotry when Muslim countries are the pits in that department, Jews aren’t even allowed in half of them and non Muslims tread lightly fearing for their lives. They even kill each other if one happens to be Shia and the other Sunni

        • dante

          And you and the rest of the Christian Taliban would love to emulate that, wouldn’t you…

        • jakester

          I am a dedicated secularist, so that is not my label. I slam the right wing Christians all the time here too.
          But I don’t see them setting off bombs or doing random mass murders around the world in the name of Christ unlike the Muslims, as lately in Nigeria. Please spare me McVeigh, he was an atheist.

  • Deep South Populist

    All American Muslim?

    LOL, what a riot.

    The title alone indicates the show is pure propaganda.

    • Graychin

      Propaganda? Muslims can’t be All-American?

      Sad to say, but if the title of the show affects you that way – you just MIGHT be a redneck! (Apologies to Jeff Foxworthy.)

    • rbottoms

      Blast kills Jersey Shore GI


      Courtesy of the Gannett News Service
       When it came to a post-high school career decision, there was nothing Kareem R. Khan wanted to do other than join the Army.

      Spurred by the Septermber 11 attacks on the World Trade Center, Khan, a 2005 graduate of Southern Regional High School, wanted to show that not all Muslims were fanatics and that many, like him, were willing to lay their lives down for their country, America. He enlisted immediately after graduation and was sent to Iraq in July 2006.

      So when his father, Feroze “Roy” Khan, saw three soldiers walking up to his door on Monday, he knew what it meant.

      Specialist Kareem Khan, 20, was killed with four others earlier this week when a blast destroyed a house he and members of his division, the Stryker Brigade Combat Team, were clearing in Baqouba, Iraq.

      An interpreter and 12 soldiers were also injured in the explosion, the Army said.
      “It’s something I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy,” Feroze Khan, 49, said Thursday night at his home in the Ocean Acres section of Manahawkin.

      Khan’s faith in Islam is important now to his father and stepmother, Nisha Khan, because they want to make sure people in America know that Muslims like Kareem were willing to fight for their country.

      “His Muslim faith did not make him not want to go. It never stopped him,” said Feroze Khan. “He looked at it that he’s American and he has a job to do.”

      The last package Nisha Khan, 40, sent her stepson included a necklace that had Kareem’s name in Arabic, next to the word “Bismillah,” which means praise to Allah.

      In the Islamic tradition, last rites must be within a few days of death. Khan’s funeral at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia is scheduled Thursday. The family will perform traditional Islamic rites at home and have a full military burial.
      “Hopefully Allah will understand,” said Nisha Khan.

      Conservatives and a**holes to the bitter end, the modern GOP.

      • nhthinker

        rbottoms broadbrushing all conservatives and the entire GOP because some conservatives are bigots.

        Is Feroze Khan a conservative and a GOP member? Possibly not, but likely at least one of the parents of the three other soldiers in Kareem’s unit that were killed the same week probably were.

        As to the meaning of the term, “All-American” it is usually used to indicate something exceptional, as in sports or some other pursuit. Is the intent that the Muslims in this show are exceptional or that they are just average ?

        I’m assuming these are TV worthy Michigan Muslims as oppose to the other ones in Michigan that force women in the side door at the Mosque or ban women from social functions if they are menstruating.
        I think the span of Muslim life is being accurately described in

        I think, based on the names, that one of the families in All-American Muslims is described in this book.

        • Graychin

          As a former member of the military, I feel qualified to state that being in the military bestows no special wisdom about foreign policy. On the contrary, service members are too often lost in the weeds of a war and lack perspective about the larger strategies and issues.

          In 2008, the military vote split 56% to 44% for McCain. The military habitually votes Republican. So how significant is it that military members approved of Obama less than Bush?

        • nhthinker

          So how significant is it that military members approved of Obama less than Bush?

          The only purpose was to show that rbottoms was implicitly calling the majority of the military members “assholes”.

      • rbottoms

        The man gave his life so you can be a jerk if you choose.

        Enjoy your freedom.

        As for goofy religious practices, you mean like not dancing? Or women not allowed to sit next to men, snake handling, speaking in tongues, refusing to see a doctor, waiting for Israel to be destroyed by the Rapture, and not using birth control because a bunch of unmarried priests tell you to?.

        Yes, there are plenty of goofy religions.

        • nhthinker

          How is it being a jerk because I pointed out you are blaming all conservatives and the whole of the republican party because some are bigots?

          I had nothing negative to say about Kareem. There are lots of conservatives and Republicans that gave their lives for their country (both bigots and non-bigots)- You were disparaging all of them equally with your broad brush. If you think that makes me a jerk, that’s your problem, not mine.

          As to “goofy”- most people think that misogyny is more than just “goofy”. There are clearly some Muslims and some Christians that are more misogynous than others. I’m sure one of the intents of the TV show were not to expose the more fundamentalist/misogynist Muslim practices and claim they are “All-American”.

    • Primrose

      That is nothing but sheer and utter bigotry. My foster brother is Muslim (as are his children) and they have been in this country for a very long time. Islam is a religion not a country.

  • Primrose

    “As to the meaning of the term, “All-American” it is usually used to indicate something exceptional, as in sports or some other pursuit. Is the intent that the Muslims in this show are exceptional or that they are just average ?”

    No that phrase doesn’t mean that. When people are casting for an All-American girl/boy, they aren’t looking for exceptional or extraordinary but a summation of average Americans (The one least likely to stand out in a crowd whose still attractive.) It means made in America, about America.

    It is completely disingenuous to claim you think they are trying to say they are superior. You know and I know that they are putting a juxtaposition of concepts together. We don’t think of Muslims as American, yet these people in Michigan are in the heartland and are American citizens.

    The great “controversy”, just to be clear, is that the show does not show this community to be violent Jihadists spending their lives making bombs. That’s what is so controversial, it is not showing them in stereotypes from Hollywood’s B roll.

    It shows them as what they are, ordinary, normal (whiny) Americans going about tedious suburban lives. It is rather as if one said that Iron Chef was controversial because it didn’t show the Japanese as rapacious, buck-toothed monsters.

    The reasons to boycott this show are legion but they are no different than the reasons to boycott the Jersey Shore, the housewives of Botox county, or whatever show gifted us with the Kardashians. (Did they actually have a show or did they appear like mushrooms after a rain?)

    • nhthinker

      I have not watched the show- Does it go into the breadth of Muslim practices of all the Dearborn Muslims, like the book I referenced? Does it try to identify that some Muslims are more All-American than others- or does it imply that fundamentalist/misogynist Muslims are just as “All-American” as everyone else? Or does it remain silent on the difference?