NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – Two religious groups will hang subway ads urging tolerance alongside anti-jihad advertisements that went up last month.
The ads by Rabbis for Human Rights – North America and the Christian group Sojourners will go up Monday. They’ll hang in the 10 Manhattan subway stations where the anti-jihad ads implying enemies of Israel are “savages” appear.
WCBS 880′s Marla Diamond reports
The Rabbis’ ad says “In the choice between love and hate, choose love. Help stop bigotry against our Muslim neighbors.” The Christian ad states: “Love your Muslim neighbors.”
In a statement explaining the ad campaign, Sojourners president and CEO Rev. Jim Wallis said “When Jesus said, ‘love your neighbor as yourself’ he didn’t add stipulations. He didn’t offer any extra addendums or added qualifiers. Christians around the world need to put that into action as often as we can, especially where we see hatred like this.”
On their website, Rabbis for Human Rights – North America said the anti-jihad ads “are meant to increase hatred and discrimination against New York City’s Muslims and to drive a wedge between Muslims and Jews.”
“It’s to the benefit of the Jewish community to partner with our Muslim neighbors,” executive director Rabbi Jill Jacobs told WCBS 880′s Marla Diamond. ”We know what it’s like to be a minority and we know what it’s like to be the target of discrimination and that’s why as Jews, because of that history, we have more of a responsibility to speak out when anyone is being discriminated again.”
On Wednesday, another group, United Methodist Women, placed pro-Muslim ads in the subway. They say: “Hate speech is not civilized.”
The American Freedom Defense Initiative is behind the anti-jihad ads, which state “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.”
The ads were court ordered to be in city subways despite Metropolitan Transportation Authority opposition. A federal judge ruled the message is protected as free speech.
According to the MTA, the anti-jihad ads have been defaced 15 times.
The American Freedom Defense Initiative didn’t respond to requests for comment on the new ads.
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