July 22nd, 2011
12:44 PM ET

New reality series tracks lives of American Muslims

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - TLC is premiering a reality series about the lives of American Muslims this fall,  "All American Muslim," the cable TV network announced this week.

The series tracks five Muslim families living around Dearborn, Michigan, home to one of the nation's largest Muslim enclaves.

The series is about “inviting viewers into a world they might not otherwise experience,” said TLC's general manager Amy Winter in a press release.

"Through these families and their diverse experiences, we will explore how they blend their values and traditions with everyday life in America," Winter said in the Thursday release, "providing insight into their culture with care and compassion.”

The series, which premieres in November, tracks "very distinct lives that often times challenge the Muslim stereotype," according to the release.

Characters include a pair of tight-knit sisters, one of whom wears a traditional Islamic headscarf and one who sports piercings and tattoos and has recently married an Irish Catholic man who is converting to Islam.

Another character is a consultant to big auto manufacturer and struggles to strike a balance between work and raising a modern Muslim family, according to the TLC release.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll released earlier this year found that 46% of all Americans have a favorable view of American Muslims, while 26% have an unfavorable view.

"Overall, positive views of American Muslims have risen since 2002, when memories of 9/11 were still fresh in most Americans' minds," said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland in March, when the poll was released.

In 2002, only 39% of all Americans said they had a favorable view of Muslims.

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Islam • Michigan • TV

soundoff (533 Responses)
  1. Jokesterer

    This show will be the bomb!

    July 24, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
  2. kowalki2

    This is indeed a great idea!

    Islam is the most over analyzed misunderstood and mislabeled religion of the world.
    It is most confused with indigenous political anger over things like occupations of nations such as Iraq mixed with religion etc.
    Bet if these false wars that are happening in say Iraq etc. didn't happen then there wouldn't be so many angry folks over oppression, humiliation and occupation to push them over the edge into terrorism.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:48 pm |
    • Triton

      Keep making excuses for them. When the domestic war starts we'll just shoot you too.

      July 24, 2011 at 4:35 pm |
  3. Melvin

    I expect this to be the most ultra-violent reality t.v. show ever. Each week they will have to follow a new Muslim family as the previous weeks family members are all dead by the end of it. Should be interesting.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
  4. Kerry

    Guess I will stop watching TLC. I see enough about the Muslims in the news daily where they are either killing or trying to kill non Muslims. I don't need to watch a BS show about them saying how peaceful they are.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
    • kowalki2

      Just see the # 1 nation in the world for Suicide bombing it is Sri Lanka!!!!
      NOT a Muslim country.
      Predominantly those terrorist acts are being done by HINDUS and I'd say in that case too it is POLITICAL reasons even though EVERY religion may occasionally have passages of violence here and there it is political reasons like OPPRESSION that usually cause people to go over the edge!

      July 24, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • Call4Peace

      So you are interested in seeing more of Norway or Oklahoma killing news?

      July 24, 2011 at 12:58 pm |
    • Truth_hurts

      @Kowalki : Got to be kidding. How blind can you be. Its not SRI LANKA its Pakistan. Hindus have been killed and converted by muslims for 1000 years. Thats why Pakistan and Bangladesh are there. If it was as you said, HIndus would have wiped Middle East out. So stop your lies and try to blame the innocents, specially, your biggest victims.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • francois_metjzon

      No @Truth_hurts, YOU need to stop lieing.
      It was SRI LAnka that was the world's # 1 suicide bombing affected nation and predominantly by Hindu Tamils.
      It is true, even though perhaps these days it may be Pakistan thanks to foreign secret service ploys to disrupt that nation and kill Muslims There! Still Pakistan was not affected by suicide bombings as much till this so called "War on terrorism" started.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:19 pm |
    • Call4Peace

      That's true, Sri Lankan Tamil tigers invented suicide bombing during 1980s. they are backed by indian governemt to destabilize sri lanka.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:23 pm |
    • hclaude98

      Ron Paul said that this is true also.
      Sri Lanka until recently was indeed. *AND maybe still is the world's number 1 suicide bombing affected nation!!!!!

      Look at Rajiv Gandhi PM of India who was suicide bombed by a Hindu fundamentalist Tamil girl and that was due to the political reasons of wanting independence for Tamils from Sri Lanka. So would you be so quick to blame their deaths on the Hindu religion too! I mean come on reason it, their religious book is full of violent passages as well! Just read the Mahabharata!

      July 24, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  5. Samuel

    Manipulating public opinion is just too easy. Clever use of the media can actually stimulate justification for crack downs with no media follow up. No questions asked to verify what happened. Yet everyone has an opinion. Fear mongering is a way for the haves to make the have- nots to kill each other by first infusing the psychology of objectification. In war time the term is "The Enemy." Any description can be infused into that term. Radio announcers put contracts out on whole groups of people while hiding under the protection of, or should I say the enabling of, Freedom of Speech. Propaganda is the first line of warfare. We need to recognize it when it is in our midst.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
  6. RealityCheck

    It was inevitable that a story like this would bring out the hate filled comments of unpatriotic anti-American fools who bask in their ignorance of the history and culture of America. For all the quotes and attempts to stir up bigotry, no matter which book of fairy tales you open they contain hate filled verses that can be used by minds already filled with hate to justify their failure at life. Fanatics exists in all camps and only the simplest of minds stereotype them all together, look at your Westboro Baptist Christians. Do think it fair as a Christian to be considered the same as them just because you are Christian? Grow up and either admit you are too incapable of learning for whatever reason or actually learn about history and other cultures melting into America.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:30 pm |
  7. troll hunter

    for those that believe all terrorists are muslims, the terrorist in norway is a christian. how does that fit into your neat little plan? all fundamentalists.... christians, muslims, jews, atheists, all of them should be put on an island and let them kill each other if that's what they want.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:29 pm |
    • Melvin

      There is a difference between calling yourself or being called by someone else (the news), a christian. This man was not exactly a follower of Christ, so no, he is not a christian.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • Bozobub

      And neither are Muslim extremists true "followers of Islam", so *bam* what about that?"

      July 24, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
    • Melvin

      To Bozo–I think Jesus told his followers to put down their swords while Mohammed told his to pick them up.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:56 pm |
    • Call4Peace

      And Malvin was sitting next to him when he said that. Or did Malvin hear that in "news too"?

      July 24, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • Bozobub

      The Bible also repeatedly shows examples of how Christianity did the same damn thing; sorry, I don't give the religion the "Aw, shucks, they wrote a NEW Testament, forget all that old stuff!" pass that you seem to. The Crusades (as just one of many examples) were just as heinous – if not even more so – as any Muslim atrocity today. And if you go to that part of the world, the Christians are exactly as militant, as well. I think ALL OF YOU are nuts.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
    • Melvin

      Call4Peace–When Peter cut the ear off of a solider trying to arrest Jesus...Jesus reprimanded him that that was not the way. Love God & your neighbors as yourself also implies this.

      Bozo–once again, the crusades were not sanctioned by Christ but by a large group of men calling themselves Christians but not following the commandments of Christ. They will be judged too.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:14 pm |
  8. beth

    This is a great idea. I think it will help non-Muslims be more understanding and open-minded about Muslim people and help lesson racism Muslims face in America.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • Wondering

      When will muslims learn about other cultures and religions? especially since they are living in a foreign country (U.S. and others) and are expected to assimilate in these countries with other people from various cultures, practicing different religions, speaking different languages, etc.

      Why is it that muslims always create problems wherever they go? Why are they so inflexible? Why is it that they do not learn to accept the drawbacks in their own religion? All religions have their brawbacks and beliefs, etc., that are totally meaningless in this day and age. We are in the 21st century and everyone has to understand that.

      Stop this damn hypocrisy.

      July 24, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
  9. Jim

    I used to watch TLC years ago (when it was known as "The Learning Channel"). It was a sister network to Discovery Channel and along with Discovery was filled with quality programming about space exploration, science, and nature. Now all they play is this "reality" junk.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:26 pm |
  10. Durdin

    I've always wondered how they make bombs with soap. Now I'll find out!

    July 24, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
    • OU812IC

      Well they don't bathe but once a month, so all that soap started building up. They figured out another way to use it

      July 24, 2011 at 12:23 pm |
    • Call4Peace

      You can learn that from Norway bomber. He published that in details.

      July 24, 2011 at 1:06 pm |
  11. G

    Is it an effort to convert more Christians to Islam (of course the dumb, directionless, and unfortunate ones) ?? I wonder why is America playing in the hands of middle eastern oil islamist companies. Definitely it's middle eastern money that's speaking through these kinds of shows. Why are people becoming so greedy Is america following europe?? Although I'm not a Christian, and not an American as well, I hate to see increasing influence of islam over a christian majority, and progressive country like America. That's just scary.

    July 24, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • OU812IC

      The answer is easy why the U.S. is playing into the hands of the Middle Eastern companies
      China and India have become two of the biggest players in the oil game(also the gold game), they are buying up more and more and the U.S. does not want that to happen

      July 24, 2011 at 12:18 pm |
    • elizabeth malone

      Ignorance is still among grown folks.How come you still ignorant?

      July 24, 2011 at 12:40 pm |
    • Bozobub

      No, it isn't. You can start saving money on tin-foil hats now, aren't you happy?

      July 24, 2011 at 12:55 pm |
  12. Yousuf

    Most of you are ignorant, you will never have nothing to say on any blogs, you are just a sad story. Its funny how Israel is the enemies of 99 of percent of the world, except USA...yet people dont hate them as much. Israel are the biggest baby killers in this world...Have you seen Israeli man or a family having 18 kids each and each of them owen two minivans? Stop hating on Muslim...You just can not eradicate 1.7 billions of Muslims as one of you stated. Just freaking deal with the none sense economy we are having in this country....GET YOURSELF A JOB....

    July 24, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • OU812IC

      What you just say

      July 24, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • abottime

      Muslims are the baby killers. Beslan MF.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:35 pm |
    • Bozobub

      Frankly, every developed country with an active military is a "baby-killer" nation. How convenient for us to forget Korea and Vietnam, eh? *cough* My Lai, a$$hats. Just because you've forgotten the our sins as a nation doesn't make them magically disappear, sorry, GET OFF YOUR HIGH HORSE.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:58 pm |
  13. OU812IC

    Yes a peaceful religion
    Check out some of the recent videos of the Muslim parades in England where there are a lot more Muslims than in the U.S. and where they are allowed to be much more vocal because of their numbers, and these are not the bad fanatical ones, there were literally 1,000's of them parading in the streets and many, not just a few were carrying large signs stating
    See the ones here in the U.S. are the same way, there just are not enough of them in any one area yet to have the balls to go out and do this in the U.S. like they do in Europe, because they would probably get their A**es kicked as they ran to the sanctuary of thier Mosque's

    July 24, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
    • anonlooker

      you for sure just made all of that up. get real

      July 24, 2011 at 12:09 pm |
    • OU812IC

      go into Google or Bing and just type in Muslim parades in Europe and look at all the images that come up of them holding these signs i speak of

      July 24, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • Samuel

      And the fourth Reich will not spare the U.S.A. because they look like us and can infiltrate so smoothly. Let the Muslims distract them and then we will strike. How could this happen to us. Our bigotry is a smooth ticket to defeat and slavery. Take your German lessons now because your focus is in the wrong place.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
    • Waseem

      its not based on reality, very wrong.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • OU812IC

      Funny how the evidence is right there to be seen
      But that's the Muslim lying way. I saw the evidence but it is not based on reality.
      They will honestly look you in the eye and call you brother as they blow up your wife and kids

      July 24, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
    • The Ole Bullsh!t Detector Is Going Off Again

      I just googled "Muslim parades in Europe." Here are what the signs said: "Gay Muslims Unveiled" "The Quran is the Guidance for All Mankind" and things like that. The worst said "Anglian Soldiers are War Criminals."

      Absolutely none of them said what OU812IC said. He is a liar.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
    • elizabeth malone

      You have jerks in every religion and every race.Not all Muslims and all nationalities are mean and ignorant.Judge ppl individual.Should people judge every white man for the crimes the klan has done.The church bombings of little girls.Should ppl judge every black person for black panther hatred back in the day.We need to stop the hate.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
    • kowalki2

      The folks who were cheering and chanting those words, if it is true, are probably a bunch of folks who wish harm Muslims there.

      EVERY religion from Judaism, to Christianity to Hinduism to Islam to Jainism ALL do occasionally have passages of violence here and there it is political reasons like OPPRESSION that usually cause people to go over the edge into terrorism.

      Also Europe picked up all the not so educated and mostly the labor class Muslim immigrants where as the USA has the more educated and skilled Muslims here. So I can see some dumb comments coming from the folks there. Not to mention Europe is not as open and tolerant to assimilating immigrants period as we are here in the US!!!! Just look at Germany and France and how they have been mostly racist and shunned the immigrants and pushed them to no option but to be frustrated.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:54 pm |
    • Call4Peace

      Yes he is a liar. Above he said muslims bathe once a month. They wash themselves at least 5 times a day and must bathe on Friday if not possible everyday?

      July 24, 2011 at 1:17 pm |
  14. Rebee

    Jesus said his kingdom is no part of this world it is not liberal or republican. This is the problem with religion people want to get earthly politics involved. If you are a true worshiper of God then politics should have no part in your religion. If people who claimed to worship God actually stayed out of politics and stopped trying to force their way of living on everyone else then we would see who the real problem in this world is Satan and his servants.

    July 24, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • Sue

      No, religion is the problem, not your fict-itious Satan. As for politics, church is full of it.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:31 pm |
  15. Guest

    Since Israeli Defense Force is the finest baby killers, it must be full of Muslims then!

    July 24, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  16. TLCsucks

    Yet another reason not to watch TLC. The next show will be Muslim families with 15 children and counting....

    July 24, 2011 at 11:56 am |
  17. Rick McDaniel

    There's already far too much religion on TV, and most of it is all about MONEY!

    July 24, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • Rebee

      That's true most religion is a snare and a racket.

      July 24, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
  18. Guest

    How to make a bomb in your home?

    1) Buy a large farm
    2) Buy six tonne of fertilaizer
    3) Kaboom

    July 24, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  19. wut

    TampaMan, stop being so afraid of the boogy man.

    July 24, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  20. Sue

    An honest reality show about Islam ( or Christianity, for that matter, and numerous other god delusions but those are the big two in terms of the sheep that follow them and the problems they cause) would present the obvious truth that the religion is utter nonsense loaded with errors and contrad-ictions, and that the god that the religion is promoting does not exist.

    The smart people in the world moved on from religion long ago. The rest of you are just backward and, in many cases, stupid or willfully ignorant.

    Now there's Reality for you, whether or not you have the courage to accept it.

    July 24, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • Roger

      Sue! You are ignorant!

      July 24, 2011 at 1:04 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.