The deeply corrupt and compromised paper did not, of course, call them pro-freedom ads, but it is noteworthy that the Post has broken ranks with the foes of free speech that are getting more vocal every day — at least for now.
“Metro should end its delay of running “˜Defeat Jihad” ad,” by the Washington Post Editorial Board, September 24:
NOTHING IN THE ad that the American Freedom Defense Initiative wants to place on local buses and trains in the Washington area violates Metro’s scant guidelines on advertising, which ban false or misleading ads and not much else. The group’s ad reads, “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.”
That message may be seen as inflammatory, obnoxious or hateful but, as a federal judge noted in July in ordering New York’s subway system to accept the ad, it is protected speech under the First Amendment.
There is nothing inflammatory, obnoxious or hateful about standing up against the violent jihad against innocent civilians, except to people who think that jihad is not really all that bad.
So it is unlikely that Metro’s decision to “defer” placing the ad on buses and trains will survive a lawsuit brought by the sponsoring group. Nor does Metro’s stated rationale “” a spokesman said that Metro wanted to wait “out of concern for public safety, given current world events” “” seem likely to hold much water in a constitutional debate.
The Constitution doesn’t say anything about restricting freedom of speech because some murderous thugs may go ape if we exercise it.
Like other incendiary advertising, and like the vile YouTube video that has sparked protests in the Muslim world, the ad degrades public debate and civic life. It could be read as labeling all of Israel’s adversaries as “savages,” vilifying them under the label of “jihad.” Even if you equate the word “jihad” with holy war or terrorism, which many Muslims do not, it is a fact that Israel’s detractors include plenty of people who are every bit as “civilized” as Israelis.
It “could be read” that way, because Leftists and Islamic supremacists insist that that is what the ad means. Their opinion, however, contrary to media assumptions, is not equivalent to established fact.
The American Freedom Defense Initiative is considered a hate group by the Anti-Defamation League and the Southern Poverty Law Center.
The Southern Poverty Law Center is considered by freedom-loving Americans to be a hate group and Leftist fundraising machine dedicated to defaming and demonizing voices on the Right that it dislikes.