Tags: buses | Israel | defeat | jihad

New York Buses Must Carry Pro-Israel, 'Defeat Jihad' Ads

Friday, 20 Jul 2012 06:33 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
A pro-Israel group must be allowed to place a paid advertisement on New York City public buses that equates jihadists with savages, a U.S. judge ruled on Friday.

The opinion by U.S. District Judge Paul Engelmayer in Manhattan said a 1997 rule by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority that barred demeaning language in advertisements was a violation of free speech.

While the rule was well intentioned, the judge found, it had the effect of discriminating against certain advertisers based on the content of their proposed message.

The advocacy group American Freedom Defense Initiative sued the MTA in September 2011 after the transit agency denied its proposed ad.

The ad said: "In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel/Defeat Jihad." The ad would have been posted on 318 city buses for four weeks, at a cost of about $25,000, the opinion said.

The American Freedom Defense Initiative, based in Sherman Oaks, Calif., has been one of the most vocal opponents to the planned construction of a mosque and Islamic center near Ground Zero in lower Manhattan.

The group says the prayer center is funded by Islamists and would sully the memory of the Sept. 11, 2001, attack victims.

"This is a great victory for the First Amendment," the group said on its website.

"Disallowing a pro-Israel ad was clearly a politically correct, politically motivated denial of free speech," said Pamela Geller, the group's executive director.

The MTA said in a statement that it was reviewing the opinion and "is evaluating its existing advertising standards in light of the court's ruling."

The judge said the advertising space on public buses should be considered a public forum. The judge also ruled that because the ad in question was political speech, it was entitled to the "highest level of protection under the First Amendment."

"By differentiating between which people or groups can and cannot be demeaned on the exterior of a city bus, MTA's no-demeaning standard ... discriminates based on content," the opinion said.

The judge said his preliminary injunction would take effect in 30 days, at which time the MTA would be prevented from enforcing the standard.

The standard bars any ads that "contain ... information that demean(s) an individual or group of individuals on account of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, gender, age, disability or sexual orientation."

While MTA officials had been correct to regard the ad as "demeaning a group of people based on religion (Islam)," the standard itself does allow for demeaning statements on a host of other topics, such as where they live, their job or their political affiliation, the judge said.

© 2014 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

McCain: Arizona Execution Was Torture

Friday, 25 Jul 2014 20:09 PM

Sen. John McCain said he supports capital punishment for certain crimes but felt Wednesday's execution of Joseph Rudolph . . .

Judge Rules Feds Wrongly Protecting Bearded Seals

Friday, 25 Jul 2014 19:30 PM

A federal judge in Alaska has ruled that a federal agency improperly listed bearded seals as threatened under the Endang . . .

Prosecutors Consider Charges After Homeowner Kills Burglar

Friday, 25 Jul 2014 18:55 PM

Prosecutors deciding whether to charge a California man who says he fatally shot a violent burglar in the back in an all . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved