Pamela Geller, the organizer of the "Jihad Watch Muhammad Art Exhibit and Cartoon Contest" in Garland, Texas, where two shooting deaths occurred Sunday, claims solidarity with Charlie Hebdo cartoonists for what she describes as her desire to advance free expression. But her history of incendiary speech has many calling the political activist a bona fide hatemonger.
The nonprofit Southern Poverty Law Center has categorized Geller's organization, Stop the Islamization of America, as a hate group, deeming its ideology "anti-Muslim." Two other New York groups the SPLC cites as hate groups are also founded by Geller: The American Freedom Defense Initiative and her blog, Atlas Shrugs, as the Village Voice notes.
Select quotes from Geller’s blog and media interviews lend credence to SPLC’s characterization of her:
— Pamela Geller (@PamelaGeller) April 21, 2015
"[I]n the war between the civilized man and the savage, you side with the civilized man. ... If you don't lay down and die for Islamic supremacism, then you're a racist anti-Muslim Islamophobic bigot." --New York Times, Oct. 8, 2010.
"Note the faces which are more MIddle [sic] Eastern or mixed than pure Norwegian.” --Geller's photo caption of participants at a Norwegian Labour Party summer youth camp on the island of Utoya hours before they were attacked by Norwegian far right mass killer Anders Behring Breivik in 2011. Sixty-nine of them would die in the mass shooting. Think Progress took a screen shot of the caption on Geller's blog before it was removed. Geller also wrote in her blog, "I am not condoning the slaughter in Norway or anywhere. ... But the jihad-loving media never told us what antisemitic war games they were playing on that island. Utoya Island is a Communist/Socialist campground, and they clearly had a pro-Islamic agenda." --Pamela Geller, "Summer Camp? Antisemitic Indoctrination Training Center," July 2011.
"[I]t is a spearhead of an ideological project that is deeply opposed to the United States of America." On Arabic language instruction in Texas schools. --Fox Business, "Follow the Money," Feb. 14, 2011, reported by Media Matters.
"How low is the state of the world? When bold-faced lying, Goebbels-style propaganda ministers like the execrable Reza Aslan are not relegated to the outermost fringe of society, but instead are given platforms to spew their libel and vile invective on ABC morning shows, and when such a person is introduced as a 'scholar,' that should give you an indication of the low state of the world. The little beast Reza Aslan is a scholar of what, exactly? Evil." --Pamela Geller, "The Depravity of a Succubus: Wretched Reza Aslan," October 2010. Aslan is an Iranian-American scholar, author and professor of creative writing at the University of California, Riverside, and a frequent media pundit on Islamaphobia.
"I don’t think that many westernized Muslims know when they pray five times a day that they’re cursing Christians and Jews five times a day." --New York Times, October 2010.
"The President of the United States is advancing jihad against the oath of office that he took." --Atlas Shrugs, "President Jihad: Obama Encouraged Violent Palestinian Muslim Protests Against Israel," April 1, 2010.
In October 2008, Gawker found a Geller blog post in which, according to Gawker, she claimed that President Obama was the love child of Malcolm X. Geller's addendum in 2009 refuted that it was her claim, and she said instead that it was from a writer who "did a spectacular job documenting Obama’s many connections with the Far Left." --Pamela Geller, "How could Stanley Ann Dunham have delivered Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. in August of 1961 in Honolulu, when official University of Washington records show her 2680 miles away in Seattle attending classes that same month?" (Original title in all caps.) October 2008.