Bus ads offering support to Muslims wanting to leave Islam that were censored just days ago by the Miami-Dade Transit agency because of complaints from Muslims are being returned to the streets, this time in even greater numbers.
On the Stop Islamization website, a statement said, “Not only will [Freedom Defense Initiative] and SIOA’s buses be going back up, but another 20 will be added to the existing [campaign].”
Ads pulled from Miami transit buses after CAIR complained
“This is a huge victory on the constitutional issues. This is the work of SIOA. Have you joined our Facebook group yet? … Robert and I want to roll this out nationwide. We have no big money, big donors. … We are two people fighting with all the gusto we can muster.”
The transit agency did not respond to a WND request for comment.
The Stop Islamization statement explained how the controversy developed.
“When the South Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations pressured the Miami-Dade Country Transit Authority to yank bus-panel ads contracted and paid for by Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer of the Freedom Defense Initiative because the ads were ‘offensive to Muslims,’ the two activists turned to the Law Offices of David Yerushalmi, P.C. for help. Mr. Yerushalmi joined forces with the Thomas More Law Center and the two law firms began preparing a federal complaint alleging breach of contract and a violation of Ms. Geller’s and Mr. Spencer’s First Amendment Rights.
“Ironically, CAIR, which has been named by the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI as a Muslim Brotherhood–Hamas front group and unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terror-fundraising trial – a trial which culminated in guilty verdicts for all of the Muslim Brotherhood defendants – claims it is ‘the nation’s largest Muslim civil-rights organization,’” the statement continued.
“It is ironic,” Yerushalmi said, “that the media allows CAIR to claim the mantle of a civil-rights organization when it embraces censorship by the government all in the service of the ‘anti-blasphemy’ platform of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, which calls for international legislation providing for criminal penalties against anyone who ‘insults Islam and its prophet Muhammad.’”
The day after the ads were pulled, Yerushalmi and co-counsel Robert Muise of the Thomas More Law Center were in conference with the Miami-Dade County attorney’s office.
The result of the meeting was the agreement that the ads should not have been pulled and a promise of fulfillment of the original contract.
Not only was the ad cancellation retracted, “CBS would run an additional 20 king-sized bus ads for the same original contract price,” the report said.
“This is not just an important day for the First Amendment. It is a ‘teaching moment’ to the media and to others in various government agencies who come across CAIR,” Yerushalmi said. “CAIR is a criminal organization with ties to Hamas and other jihadists. This is not my opinion but the considered view of the U.S. Attorney’s office, the FBI, and the federal courts, all based on the evidence CAIR has never refuted. If you find yourself on the same side of an issue with CAIR, you’d better examine the facts a bit more closely.”
The ads included the message “Fatwa on your head? Is your community or family threatening you?” and suggested a website called “Leave Islam.”
Pro-Islam bus ads
The organizations behind the ads noted a number of bus companies around the nation had carried a promotion of Islam.
The ads declared Islam was “submission to God” and “the way of life of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, & Muhammad.”
“So Muslims can run bus ads all across America inviting the clueless to convert to Islam, but we cannot make information available to Muslims who want to leave Islam,” Spencer wrote.
On his JihadWatch website, Spencer responded to a comment that the ads be “toned down.”
“What is offensive about our ad? What is wrong with its tone? Apostates are threatened and killed all over the world. We offered them help. What would you suggest we tone down? What would you suggest we not say in order to please them? Why must we always play this game, instead of speaking the truth without fear? There is nothing objectively wrong or offensive about our ad. You’re falling into their trap, allowing them to define what is offensive and what isn’t. I refuse to do so,” he said.
“And even if our ad were offensive to someone, so what? I am offended by all sorts of things. I wouldn’t dream of trying to get them suppressed because they offend me, and no one would take me seriously if I did. But Muslims are already a de facto privileged class, even in America – if I’m offended, no one gives two hoots and no one should, but if Muslims are offended, watch out! Heaven and earth will move!
“The group that is allowed to suppress speech with which it disagrees, or which it finds offensive, is a group that can suppress dissent and carry out its will unchallenged. That is the road to tyranny,” he said.