On December 9th, one of the agents of Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) tweeted the following.
The original tweet is available here.
The matter involved a recent decision by the hardware box store chain, Lowe’s, to cancel advertising scheduled to air during one of TLC’s “reality” shows, called All-American Muslim. Apparently, this move was the result of pressure exerted in part by groups like the Florida Family Association.
Let’s set aside the absurd premise of the TLC show. Let’s also set aside the clearly paranoid delusions of the Florida Family nuthouse.
I’m a little troubled by the tone of Anonymous’s tweet, which clearly associates Lowe’s actions with “hate” against Muslims.
Don’t get me wrong. I think Anonymous is serving a vital social function by providing people with an alternate perspective free of virtually all the shackles with which society has hindered itself. I think any rational person will be made to think more carefully of their role in society – and, perhaps more importantly, the role of certain institutions – by reflecting on what Anonymous is about. They tend to “attack” defence contractors, tend to support other organizations dedicated to openness (like Wikileaks), and have worked to shut down child porn sites. Anonymous isn’t a terrorist group; they’re clearly directed in their work, and, generally, they attempt to undermine organizations that have been seen as corrupt in one way or another.
Now, they’re picking on Lowe’s for pulling advertising? What about the other companies that have pulled their ads? (20-ish or 60-ish other companies – depending on who you read – have also pulled their ads from that show.) What’s Lowe’s done that merits such special attention?
And is it really “hate” to pull the advertising? Clearly, groups like the Florida Family freaks are islamophobic shit-disturbers of the first order. It is not at all clear that Lowe’s isn’t just capitulating to that pressure rather than espousing the position.
Why isn’t Anonymous going after the Florida Family Association? Clearly, the latter is a bunch of right-wing nut jobs that really deserve whatever Anonymous can dish out.
While I can understand the approach taken by Anonymous generally, I’m seriously concerned that without a little more direction, they may end up doing something entirely unacceptable – which would undermine entirely the power that the organization currently holds in the public psyche, and would likely give ultimate victory to the very organizations that Anonymous seems intent on disturbing.