Self-described “anti-jihadist” and conservative blogger Pamela Geller — the executive director of Stop Islamization of America (SIOA) — has joined the chorus of right-wing paranoia. Earlier this month on MSNBC, Geller suggested the Islamic center is a “triumphal mosque” on “conquered lands.” Now her organization has recently launched a series of bus ads reading, “Fatwa on your head? Is your family or community threatening you? Leaving Islam? Got questions? Get answers!” in major cities, including San Francisco, Miami, and New York:
RefugeFromIslam.com, the website promoted on Geller’s ads, contends that Muslim Americans who “long to be free” of their religion are in danger of being killed, and offers protection, including “safe houses,” for those who want out. Muslim rights groups and religious leaders say there is no penalty for leaving Islam and that the Koran condemns killing as a sin.
While Geller claims that the bus campaign’s goal is “to help ex-Muslims who are in trouble,” several religious rights organizations have criticized Geller for inciting fear about a religion that is already misunderstood. The Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim civil rights organization that has voiced concerns over several of these bus ads, especially because it seems to imply the false claim that Muslims who choose to leave Islam are in danger. (More)