After months of heavy promotion in TV commercials and magazine ads, The Learning Channel aired yesterday the first episode of its new show All-American Muslim. All the pitches promised that it would be a “groundbreaking” experience, which will change the perception of the Muslims in the USA.
It is nice to see that Islam has its own reality show in the TV world. It’s a real honour to join the row of the distinguished reality shows: the airheads Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie (Simple Life); the even emptier airheads, the Kardashians; the disturbing misfits Jon and Kate and their eight unfortunate children (Jon, Kate and Eight); the Octomom; the polygamous Mormons (Sister Wives), and the numerous shows about deprived and dissatisfied housewives.
Why not? That should mean that the Muslims are becoming a cool part of the TV insanity.
The show follows the lives of a few Muslim families in America’s favourite Muslim ghetto – Dearborn, Michigan. The introductory sequence shows us some of those people in their natural habitat – we see girls with hijabs, women whose faces are covered and even a gargoyle in a full burka roller-skating in the street. How American!
It’s important to note that the majority of the families featured are Lebanese. Due to the complex ethnicity of Lebanon, Muslims had to live there showing some respect to the other religions. That probably made them more susceptible to accepting the show producers’ agenda, as opposed to the Muslims from more barbaric countries like Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan. But even with Lebanese Muslims that agenda failed miserably.
In the beginning we are gradually introduced to the people we will be following. First we have Shadia and Jeff. They met online and love each other.
Shadia is Lebanese who comes from a pious Muslim family. Her mother and sisters wear hijabs, while she looks like a cheap Kentucky hooker. True, she has a full set of teeth, but her hideous makeup, the outfits she wears, the tacky necklaces and huge tattoos on her back and her hip don’t create the impression of a pious Muslim. Her father obviously doesn’t like her style and she might be a few short months from getting the short end of his wrath stick. As they say on the dating sites, she has “a few extra pounds” (way, way extra), but Jeff called her “gorgeous” when he first contacted her.
That is very revealing about what kind of a man Jeff is. He’s an Irish-American (I hate that hyphenated term, but that’s how he defines himself). He has the strange and bewildered look of a guy who is afraid of being politically incorrect and probably hasn’t got laid in years. Such guys would cling to the first woman who shows any interest in them regardless of her character.
Then we are introduced to Nina. She is the same “rebellious” type like Shadia, but with much better taste – doesn’t even look like a Muslim with her good makeup, short skirt, and bleached hair (and I should add her huge breasts, which she didn’t hide too much). She admits her looks give her quite a few unsavoury looks in her town. Nina is employed as real estate agent.
We are brought to a meeting with her business partner, a Lebanese guy, in a café. She tells him that she wants to open and manage a club. The partner is one of the typical angry Muslims, who don’t know what they are angry about. He flatly tells her that her idea is dumb and her family won’t approve it.
From his reaction you get the impression that she is willing to open a strip club with rooms for hookers upstairs. Later she talks alone to the camera and we learn that she wants to open a simple bar. Of course, in Dearborn that is as bad as a hooker joint. How American!
Next the producers bring us the Football Coach. I missed his name and I am glad I did. He lives in a large house with his wife and his daughters. He has a high pitched voice and is a VERY devout Muslim. He says that he loves Islam more than anything else and then comes his family.
All of his young daughters wear hijabs. He states that girls should wear hijabs since the age of 9. One of his daughters says that after she started wearing it, everybody told her how pretty she looked. Judging from her looks, I would consider the burka a more appropriate outfit.
The coach is proud about how he accommodates Islam in his football practice. During the Ramadan, he asked his players to practice all night, after the daily fast. I wonder if this is the team that forced its non-Muslim players to play all night along with the Muslim fanatics (that was in the news). How American!
The action is frequently interrupted by a conversation of several Muslims in a room sitting on two couches. A woman in hijab says that she is like everybody else – she shampoos and perms her hair, dyes it, and highlights it, the only difference is that nobody sees that. I get the feeling that we are in an insane asylum.
For the rest of the episode, the producers are dealing with Jeff and Shadia. They want to get married, obviously that’s the last chance for both of them. However, her father and brother explain in a sombre tone that it won’t work unless Jeff converts to Islam. Jeff is a Roman Catholic by the way. They explain further that it is possible for a Muslim man to marry a non-Muslim woman, but the opposite is impossible. How American!
In the typical fashion of a chump who is afraid that no other woman would have sex with him in the future, he is desperate to keep Shadia, so he is willing to convert.
When he tells his mother, she looks devastated, but decides he can do it, if it makes him happy. Apparently getting rid of her dimwitted son is more important.
Then we are treated to a talk between Jeff and his future father-in-law, who explains the conversion process. You just need to say out loud one sentence, which he has written on a piece of paper. Jeff tries to read it with some difficulties, but that’s not the real conversion (it is scheduled in a few days). The old man doesn’t forget to warn his future son-in-law that Muslims believe in total submission to their god and the same is expected from him. Jeff looks at him like a bewildered idiot, but doesn’t say anything. How American!
Fast forward to the conversion day. It takes place at Shadia parents’ home. Everybody is in the living room, except Jeff and her brother, who are in another room getting prepared. When they come out, the brother says that they discussed the issue and decided to convert to Judaism. Apparently, that is supposed to be a joke, because everybody laughs. Then the brother asks everybody to calm down – Jeff would be converting to Islam. Jeff reads out loud the sentence, this time with fewer mistakes, and he becomes a Muslim. He is fascinated how easy it is. By the way, his mother is also there covered with a hijab.
The next day is the wedding ceremony, also at their home. When the imam shows up, we see that he is a shia Muslim. That also takes only a few minutes. Shadia temporarily sacrifices her hooker looks for a long black dress with hijab. Later, at the party, she wears a low-cut white wedding dress, so we all can enjoy the large tattoos on her back.
Jeff’s Irish relatives (and he has quite a few of them) attend the party. The main drawback is that no alcohol is served in compliance with the sharia law. For a bunch of Irishmen such a wedding party is considered cruel and unusual punishment. However, the producers find a dimwit similar to Jeff, who says with a big smile that you don’t need alcohol to have a great time (yea, right). How Irish!
The guests are entertained first by another Irish relative – a girl who dances in the traditional Riverdance-like way, in short skirt and sleeveless shirt. Then we see a belly dancer – she wears a long dress with sleeves.
After that, one of Shadia’s sisters, a hijab wacko, says that the belly dancer is repulsive, she flaunts herself like a stripper. We are spared her opinion about the Irish dancer. How American!
In the end of the episode we are promised more treats, like going into more depth in the life of a local Muslim cop, who thinks that free speech is great, but it needs some limits.
That was the show, which is supposed to explain what great all-American chaps the Muslims are. It fails at every point.
The fanatics will say that it promotes the decay of the Muslim mores by flaunting those immodest women.
The non-Muslim Americans would definitely notice that even the “moderate” Muslims have no intention of adjusting to the American life. Every transgression is met with hostility – if you want to marry a girl, you are the one who should join their cult. Everything – football, restaurants, weddings, should be twisted to satisfy their demands. And everybody should bend over to satisfy them, because their vile religion is superior.
And there will be more of this to come in the next episodes. How is this going to make them more likeable?
The Muslims they show are as American as a fundamentalist Mormon enclave in rural Utah. I hope producers realize that early on, before damaging completely the Muslims’ image (not that the Muslims themselves haven’t damaged it enough already).
You can get away with such a dumb show only on a tax-payer-supported network like Canada’s CBC, which doesn’t care too much what the viewers think. Otherwise, we won’t be having the drivel named Little Mosque on the Prairie on the air for so many years. Hopefully, TLC as a commercial channel would ditch their clumsy attempt at Muslim propaganda before making fools out of themselves. All-American Muslim should join the garbage party, where Paris Hilton, Kate, Jon, and the Octomom are waiting for it.
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