Despite turning the ad down for “demeaning” language, a judge has ruled on First Amendment grounds that the MTA must start displaying a poster that reads, “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man.” The “Support Israel. Defeat Jihad” ad, which has been “deferred” in Washington, D.C. due to current events, is the work of the Pamela Geller–led group American Freedom Defense Initiative, whose past work includes signs that say, “It’s not Islamophobia, it’s Islamorealism.” The new ad will appear in ten New York stations starting next week, and no, Geller is not worried about the timing coinciding with violent protests around the world sparked by an anti-Islam YouTube video.
Pamela Geller, the executive director of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, said in an e-mail Tuesday that transit officials in Washington were “kowtowing to the threat of jihad terrorism.” She added that recent events in the Middle East had not given her pause “for a second” about posting the ads in New York.
“I will never cower before violent intimidation, and stop telling the truth because doing so is dangerous,” she said. “Freedom must be vigorously defended.”
A representative for the Council on American-Islamic Relations said the ad is “perfectly legal,” but added, “We’re encouraging American Muslims to go out there and define themselves.” Subway artists, do your thing.