I spent most of my life living in Michigan. And I spent a year living in Dearborn, Michigan under the mayorship of Orville Hubbard, pictured at the right.
So I have some knowledge.
Dearborn, is probably like a lot of small towns. If you look at the history of any small town, you will probably find some fascinating changes that have occurred over the time span of the 1700’s to today.
But few would exhibit the amazing changes that have occurred in this seemingly unimportant suburban community outside Detroit, Michigan.
Originally of course, much of Dearborn was occupied by members of the Algonquin family of tribes. But that soon changed with America’s revolution, and white folks populated the area and named it after Revolutionary patriot and Secretary of State under Jefferson, Henry Dearborn.
For a long time Dearborn was of no consequence. That was until areas surrounding it (still in farm land) caught the eye of resident, Henry Ford. Some of that land became the Ford estate, the Ford Motor Company World Headquarters (The Glass House), Ford Proving Grounds. People still come there to see the Ford Museum, which features so much stuff that I can’t begin to tell describe it all.
Along came a man named Orville Hubbard who became Mayor in 1942 and retained that job until 1978 (I lived there in 1972-73 I believe).
Now you have to recall that Detroit at that time was in its growing pains. Car companies thrived in and about the city, which steel was forged at the Rouge plant down the river. Building cars was big business. And African-Americans, beaten down by Jim Crow laws throughout the South were migrating north to find a better life. Many found it in Detroit where employment in the factories were plentiful.
A few years later, in the aftermath of President Kennedy’s assassination, the Civil Rights Act was passed and then the Voting Rights Act.
Orville looked out upon this landscape, and came to a few conclusions. Hubbard has been styled by some as the “suburban face of resistance to racial integration.” And he was.
He had an abiding and hideous hatred of African-Americans. He was all that one would expect of a Southern plantation owner and more. He describes being in Haiti in the Marines and claims they practiced cannibalism, even “eating a few Marines.” He once called the “bullet-ridden body” of a black man found in the city as “a clear case of suicide” and ordered the case closed. He ordered his local police to “shoot looters on sight” during the 1967 insurrection in Detroit.
The slogan of his administration which continued until 1978, was “Keep Dearborn Clean” which was widely recognized to mean, “Keep Dearborn White.”
The way it worked was simply this: white folks found “reasons” never to sell to blacks, and whites who were rumored to be doing that were vandalized. Of course he didn’t think much better of Jews or the Irish, and later, the Arabs either.
The Arabs that first moved into Dearborn were almost all Lebanese Christians. They were later followed by Muslims from various countries. After Hubbards retirement blacks slowly moved in, but today, still nearly 85% of the population is “white”. However, 34% of that “white” demographic is Arab.
The largest Mosque in North America is found there.
And well, sadly it has now become the focus of hatred in another vein.
I don’t know much about the show. Actually I know nothing other than there is a “reality” based show about Muslim families in Dearborn, and how they incorporate their faith with their patriotism for America. As with all commercial television shows, it has corporate sponsors who buy ad time (known as commercials) throughout the program.
A fringe group, Florida Family Association, whose sworn duty is to promote all things biblical, has launched a campaign against the show and more particularly against the sponsors of the show, being some 67 companies. They claim that 65 have now pulled their ads. Some of these companies are: McDonald’s, Bank of America, Campbell’s Soup, Dell, Estee Lauder, General Motors, Goodyear, Green Mountain Coffee, Sears, Wal-Mart, and most famously Lowe’s.
What is insane, is the FFA objects to the show because it fails to present Muslims as terrorists! In other words, the show is not “fair and balanced” showing only law-abiding, patriotic, good citizens.
Well, it’s all insane. This is bigotry at its worst. This is un-American. This is absurd. It is reprehensible. It cannot be allowed to stand.
Go to SignOn.org to register your anger.
Or go to Lowe’s Facebook page: and register your views directly.
**Orville Hubbard: the ghost that still haunts Dearborn Wikipedia: Dearborn Michigan