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It took a federal judge to get New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority to allow ads to run on buses calling for support of Israel against terrorist attacks. Though a year ago the MTA accepted an ad sponsored by an anti-Israel group calling for an end to military aid to Israel, it initially refused to permit display of an ad sponsored by a pro-Israel group that read, “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man./ Support Israel/Defeat Jihad.”
The MTA rejected the ad, finding that it violated one of the MTA’s written advertising standards that prohibits ads with “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.”
The MTA’s refusal to permit the ad led to a lawsuit brought by the sponsoring group, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, claiming a violation of its right to free speech.
An MTA official, Jeffrey Rosen, told the judge that the MTA’s decision was based on its position that the ad used the words “savage” and “Jihad” to identify those who fail to support Israel and this “demeans a group (or groups) of individuals on account of their religion, national origin, or ancestry, including Palestinians or other Arabs or Muslims who do not share AFDI’s views on Israel.”
Though the judge held that the references were reasonably understood to mean Muslims and Arabs, he nonetheless held that the MTA’s “demeaning” standard was too loose and provided no objective guidance as to what was permissible and what was not and allowed the MTA to pick and choose the kind of speech it would allow.
He went on to give examples of ads that were allowed in the past which were clearly uncomplimentary to individuals and groups. This state of affairs was incompatible with the constitutional notion that government may not censor speech, he said.
Those who chafe at the high-handed way New York City officials often take positions in the exercise of their official duties that go out of their way to accommodate and identify with Muslim and Arab sensitivities, should certainly welcome this decision.
Actually, in the light of the recent anti-American rioting in Benghazi, Cairo, Tunis and other Muslim/Arab venues, all Americans should welcome anything that militates against the notion of granting the slightest legitimacy to those outrages and the people who perpetrate them.
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Few Arab Israelis found anything positive in the decision of its MKS to join any Gaza flotilla.
US Jews prefer to be like their non-Jewish liberal friends complaining about “settlements” and Bibi
New Israel Fund & its supporters must be countered; Israel’s in the midst of an unprecedented storm
Haym Solomon, overlooked hero of the Revolutionary War, was America’s “Funding Father.”
Latvia, July 4, 1941 they forced many Jews in the shul putting it on fire; everyone was burned alive
There’s blood on the reporters’ hands AND New Israel Fund for funding groups feeding lies to the UN
Respect & appreciation for our country is not only a civic value but an essential Jewish one as well
When words lose meaning, the world becomes an Orwellian dystopia; a veritable Tower of Babel
Israel, like the non-radical Islamic world. will be happy see the ISIS beheaded for once.
Kids shouldn’t have “uninstructed” Internet access, better to train them how to use it responsibly
What if years from now, IS were to control substantial territory? What world havoc would that wreak?
Rambam writes the verse’s double term refers to 2 messiahs: first King David; 2nd the final Mashiach
The Gaza flotilla has been rightfully and legally blocked by Israel’s Navy, with greetings from Bibi
Can adoption agencies limit the placement of children to heterosexual couples only?
It wasn’t too long ago that Mr. Erdogan, in his determination to burnish Turkey’s credentials as an Islamist state at the cost of the secularism that had brought much economic and political success to Turkey, upended his country’s decades-long cooperative relationship with Israel.
Does the pope really believe that Father Dehon’s destructive anti-Jewish calumnies do not disqualify him from the highest honor of the Catholic Church because in his time everyone did it?
There was something else of great importance in play – something we would have liked to see him take into account before deciding to stand with the boycotters.
“Let’s get something straight so we don’t kid each other…[the Iranians] already have paved a path to a bomb’s worth of material,” said Mr. Biden. “Iran could get there now if they walked away in two to three months without a deal.”
Beyond the particulars of this tragic death, however, we should all be concerned about the possibility that a criminal prosecution in a major American city is being driven by fear of mobs in the street.
Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/editorial/the-mtas-demeaning-double-standard/2012/09/25/
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