SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) – A controversy has been re-ignited this week as ten new ads go up on San Francisco Muni buses containing quotes used by terrorists.
“Killing Jews is worship that draws us closer to Allah,” reads one of the ads, which has people debating the line between free speech and hate speech.
“The purpose of our campaign is to show the reality of Jihad, the root causes of terrorism. Using the exact quotes and text that they use,” said Pamela Geller of the American Freedom Defense Institute.
Several San Francisco city leaders, including District Attorney George Gascon, have condemned the campaign.
“San Francisco won’t tolerate Islamophobic bigotry,” said Gascon. “The only thing necessary for evil to prevail is for good people to look the other way and do nothing.”
Board of Supervisors President David Chiu said the American Freedom Defense Initiative is made of “well-known hate extremists” and said he is introducing a resolution at Tuesday’s board meeting to denounce the ads.
Geller said the ads were a response to another bus ad campaign earlier this year by the Council on American-Islamic Relations.
That campaign sought to disassociate the word “jihad” with violence and reclaim its meaning as “the struggle,” which is a central tenet of Islam.