‘Killing Jews’ Ad Approved For New York Subways
Free speech? Or speech that incites?
…New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) wasn’t keen on running ads which read “Killing Jews is worship that draws us closer to Allah.” But thanks to a judge’s decision on Tuesday, these catchy anti-Semitic-seeming-but-actually-Islamophobic posters will be coming soon to a bus near you (if you live in New York)!
The ad in question was paid for by the American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), a so called “Pro-Israel” organization, which the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) labels a hate group, lead by Pamela Geller, whom the SPLC calls, “the anti-Muslim movement’s most flamboyant figurehead.” You may remember Geller from her previous tasteless and hateful campaigns like the San Francisco bus signs which compared Muslims to Nazis and said “Stop the hate… End all U.S. aid to Islamic countries.” Or the Washington DC-based billboards which read, “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat jihad.”
…The MTA declined to run the MyJihad ads, which is part of the reason they didn’t want to run these ads and had asked for an injunction against AFDI. Not only are the ads Islamophobic but, ironically, they could easily function as anti-Semitic, since the otherwise powerful and stinging satire will be lost on all commuters who don’t follow the hot and heavy AFDI vs CAIR transit-based-ad-campaign rivalry.
But Judge John Koeltl disagreed, determining that the MTA could not prove the ads would lead to violence that would outweigh the AFDI’s freedom of speech.