Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA) Designated as Hate Group
(WASHINGTON, D.C., 2/25/11) -- The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said today that the main group opposing the planned Park51 Islamic community center in Manhattan, Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), has been designated by theSouthern Poverty Law Center as one of the nation’s more than 1,000 hate groups.
"One need not go beyond the name of this hate group, Stop the Islamization of America, to recognize the validity of the Southern Poverty Law Center's designation," said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper.
He noted that the United States Patent and Trademark Office refused to grant SIOA a trademark because: "The applied-for mark refers to Muslims in a disparaging manner because by definition it implies that conversion or conformity to Islam is something that needs to be stopped or caused to cease."
Hooper said SIOA is an outgrowth of a similar group in Europe that seeks to block the construction of mosques on that continent. Its sister organization, Stop the Islamization of Europe, "considers Islamophobia to be the height of common sense."
SIOA co-founder Pamela Geller has claimed that "Hitler and the Nazis were inspired by Islam" and that Islam "mandates" lies and deception.
Geller has also posted images on her blog that include a fake photograph of then Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan in a Nazi uniform, another fake image of President Obama urinating on an American flag and drawings purporting to depict Islam's Prophet Muhammad as a pig.
One image posted by Geller, headlined "Piss Be Upon Him," showed one of the controversial Danish cartoons of the prophet covered in urine. ("Piss Be Upon Him" is designed to mock the traditional phrase "Peace Be Upon Him" that Muslims use when mentioning any prophet of God.)
Geller has written of President Obama: "[O]ne thing is for sure: Hussein is a muhammadan [sic]." Geller also wrote: "[I]t is well known that Obama allegedly was involved with a crack whore in his youth."
In a 2010 blog entry, Geller posted a video claiming that Muslims engage in bestiality.
According to Geller, Muslim groups "control information and how it is processed at senior levels of the CIA, the FBI, the Pentagon, and the various branches of the military."
Another SIOA co-founder, Robert Spencer, has been identified by the independent national media watch group Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting (FAIR) as one of "Islamophobia's Dirty Dozen" who systematically "spread fear, bigotry, and misinformation." In its report, FAIR said, "By selectively ignoring inconvenient Islamic texts and commentaries, Spencer concludes that Islam is innately extremist and violent."
Geller and Spencer also co-founded another hate group, American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI), with an individual who says he is an admirer of the founder of two terrorist organizations.
In an Internet profile, AFDI founder John Joseph Jay named "rabbi meir kahna” [sic] as one of his "heroes and inspirations in life.” This is an obvious reference to Rabbi Meir Kahane, the founder of the groups Kach and Kahane Chai, which have been listed as Designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations by the U.S. Department of State.
Jay has in the past called for the killing of all Muslims. He wrote: "[T]here are no innocent muslims. islam is subject to killing on grounds of political expediency on the same basis as islam kills its victims, and islam cannot ethically and morally claim otherwise." [Note: Grammatical errors in the original text have been maintained.]
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, or 202-488-8787, E-Mail: email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787, 202-341-4171, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org