TLC is experimenting with another reality show focusing on American Muslims which is aptly titled “All American Muslim.” I think it is a great idea.
The location is in Dearborn, Michigan which boasts the largest mosque in the United States and the series will premiere in November. With all of the misunderstandings on what an American Muslim is versus the overseas terrorists that constantly make the news this reality show could prove to be a real eye opener. The problem with Islam is not necessarily stereotyping, but that we are unfamiliar with different types of Islamic beliefs–or rather how different groups of people practice Islam. Islam isn’t peace, Muslims who choose to be peaceful are about peace. I believe this is the case with a majority of American Muslims.
Per The Hollywood Reporter, the show will feature 5 diverse American Muslim families. Diverse as in no Muslim family can be exactly alike and I would be curious to see how much each family differs on issues of religious interpretation or how their religion affects their everyday lives. Are some families casual practitioners like some Christian families or are they all strict? Is tradition losing out to the young who see the freedom of growing up in the United States?
I believe even with all of its faults Americanism (including our self-indulgent pop culture) is one of the best ways to temper the more radical elements of Islam, or any other religion for that matter. Admittedly, radicalization often is more political than spiritual but other issues of female equality and homophobia are promulgated in chauvinistic Middle East societies which base their beliefs on the Koran. A more tolerant and liberal interpretation is needed to bring the religion in step with modern values. Of course, I would be happy if we would be done with Allah and the other gods but I know that’s not realistic. One step at a time…