A controversial advertisement by an extreme right wing American group hit New York subway stations Monday. The pro-Israel ad that equates "jihad" with "savagery" made more news on Twitter than in the busy subway where people rushed past the ads unconcerned.
"In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel Defeat Jihad," the ad reads.
The "savage jihad ad," which appeared in 10 subway stations in New York, was originally not permitted by the New York's Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA), saying it contained demeaning language. However, a court ruled in favor of the ad, sponsored by the American Freedom Defense Initiative.
The ad, featuring mostly black-and-white lettering on 46-by-30-inch (117-by-72-cm) cardboard posters, will remain posted for a month, said MTA spokeswoman Marjorie Anders, according to a Reuters report.
The provocative ads are promoted by Pamela Geller, the executive director for AFDI and publisher of a blog called Atlas Shrugs, who claims that there is “nothing hateful” about the ads.
The ads also appeared in buses in San Francisco and may be seen in Chicago shortly.
The passengers who were rushing through the city’s subway stations hardly took any notice of the ads despite the controversy surrounding it. However, the hate ad caught the twitterati's attention with several users condemning the ads while some supporting it.
Hashtagged as #MySubwayAd and #AntiHate, tweets on the issue flooded Twitter. Most of the tweets were thought-provoking while some were also humorous. Here are some of the hilarious and thought-provoking tweets on the issue.
Khalid Latif @KLatif: Hatred won't ever work as a solution, but it will always be a part of the problem. Don't fight hate with hate.
Imran Inc @ImranInc: In any war between Husband & Wife, always support the lawyer because he is the man going to get rich out of this war.
Elizabeth West @Limeylizzie: The two Yemeni brothers at my local deli held my hands and wept with me on 9/11, we were all New Yorkers, don't divide us now.
Ahmed Rehab @Ahmed_Rehab: Pali Dr. Abuelaish treats Jews at an Israeli hospital. His 3 daughters were killed by an Israeli strike in Gaza. Savages u say?
Aber Kawas @AberKawas: Saw the ad in Times Square. Walked out the station so angry only to find a man sleeping in the street. Support the homeless in NYC.
Sushma Joshi @joshisushma: “In Any War Between the Civilized Man and the Savage, Support Your Local Organic Coffee Beans.”
Nazish Chaudhry @Nazday: "Stop insulting us. We're probably your doctors."
Imran Ali Malik @iamalik: In the war between Hatemongering and Humanity, support Humanity. Defeat Islamophobia.
Meriam S @meriamsabih: In any war between the civilized man and the savage, don't let the media dictate who the savage is. Educate yourself.
Walter Glenn Langley @WalterGlennLang: The subway ad is not hate. It's a call to stand against savagery. It has the name of Israel on it so you cry hate. Embassy attacks?
TheQ @ImTheQ: Islamophobia dressed up as Freedom of Speech is still Islamophobia.
Linda Sarsour @lsarsour: In NYC We Speak 140 Languages and HateIsn’t One of Them.
adlybazaar @adlybazaar: I wonder if the ad would have been allowed to run if it said "Support Palestine. Defeat Zionism" instead.
Hannah Armstrong @HannahHaniya: Imagine being an American in a country with billboards on public transportation calling you a savage.
Galway Tweets @galwaytweets: AllanCavanagh: "Did you hate an ethnicity today? No? Here's your human race membership card."
Dimple Patel @_Dimple: I'm an American living in an Islamic country being respected. But Muslims living anywhere are being disrespected. Is that just?
Ms. Hala Abdoun @Ms_Hala: In any war between the civilized & the savage support the Krabby Burger & defeat the Chum Bucket.