The NY Daily News has an objective and fair piece of reporting on our new free speech campaign submitted to run on Washington, DC buses. Yes, that Daily News, notorious for its smear pieces against counter-jihad initiatives.
Pamela Geller submits Prophet Muhammad cartoon ads for display on Washington, D.C., Metro buses, trains, By Sasha Goldstein, NY Daily News, ay 26, 2015
A cartoon image of the Prophet Muhammad could be coming to a bus near you.
Free-speech firebrand Pamela Geller has submitted an ad to the Washington, D.C. transit authority featuring the winning image from the “Draw Muhammad” cartoon contest held earlier this month in Garland, Texas.
“Drawing Muhammad is not illegal under American law, but only under Islamic law,” Geller, the 56-year-old head of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, said in a statement posted to Breitbart.com. “Violence that arises over the cartoons is solely the responsibility of the Islamic jihadists who perpetrate it. Either America will stand now against attempts to suppress the freedom of speech by violence, or will submit and give the violent the signal that we can be silenced by threats and murder.
“We cannot submit to the assassin’s veto.”
The ad campaign features the winning cartoon, which depicts a bearded, turban-wearing Muhammad wielding a sword as he growls,” You can’t draw me!”
A voice bubble coming from the direction of the cartoonist reads, “That’s why I draw you.”
The D.C. ad campaign features the winning cartoon, below the message, “Support Free Speech,” written in all caps in red coloring. Geller wants the images to “run on buses and train dioramas in the Foggy Bottom, Capitol South, Bethesda, L’Enfant Plaza, and Shady Grove Stations.”
A WMATA spokesman said the agency received the ad on Friday and it is “currently under our standard review process.”
“I have no indication of the outcome at this point,” spokesman Mike Tolbert told the Daily News.
Muslims consider any depiction of the Prophet Muhammad, cartoonish or not, to be supremely disrespectful and offensive.
The artist, Bosch Fawstin, won $10,000 prize for winning the contest.
The May 3 event at a suburban Dallas community center was just coming to a close when two self-avowed jihadists, Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi, pulled up and opened fire on security guards patrolling the parking lot.
The two men, roommates who drove from Phoenix, Ariz., intending to attack the event, were both killed in the ensuing shootout. A security guard suffered minor wounds, but no one else was reported injured.
The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack, though experts believe the duo was influenced, not directed, by the terror group.
Organizers, including Geller – who has become a lightning rod for critics who think she promotes anti-Islam views – knew they’d be targeted but refused to back down.
“This threat illustrates the savagery and barbarism of the Islamic State,” Geller told the Daily News in a statement she later posted on her website.”They want me dead for violating Sharia blasphemy laws. What remains to be seen is whether the free world will finally wake up and stand for the freedom of speech, or instead kowtow to this evil and continue to denounce me.”
The WMATA’s guidelines for commercial and public service advertising are available here.
Geller took to blogging after the 9/11 attacks and gained notoriety for her opposition to the controversial “Ground Zero Mosque.”
She recently fought the MTA over her right to post public transit ads featuring a man in a Middle Eastern headdress with the quote, “Killing Jews is worship that draws us closer to Allah,” and the tagline, “That’s his jihad. What’s yours?”
Geller previously bankrolled bus ads in Washington, D.C., that featured photos of Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler talking with a Muslim leader beside the message “Islamic Jew-hatred: It’s in the Quran.” In San Francisco, her group ran ads showing American Journalist James Foley moments before he was beheaded by ISIS terrorists last year.
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