“When someone attacks our religion it’s like they are attacking us,” said Oakland Imam Salah el Seeiadi in response to the new ads.
Similar ads have already appeared in Washington D.C. and Chicago.
Geller, whose group also ran an ad campaign last year on Muni buses that referred to Muslims as “savages,” criticized the San Francisco city officials for holding today’s event against her campaign.
“They’re holding a press conference to denounce … my pointing out the truth,” she said. “The purpose of our ads is to show the purpose of jihad.”
“I am merely using high-profile Muslims and their own words. How does that paint every Muslim with the same brush? I don’t understand that,” Geller said.
Muni and its ad subcontractor decided the signs were well within first amendment guidelines. However, the transit system decided not to make any money over the controversy, and is instead donating the proceeds – about $5,000 – to the Human Rights Commission.
In response to the ads, Muni is also launching its own ad campaign this week that will promote peace and acceptance of all people, Chiu said.
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