Predictably, hearteningly, people are already vandalizing the shit out of those bigoted, anti-Muslim new subway ads everyone’s been dreading.
In spite of heightened police presence in subway stations that feature the ads (there are 10 in total), the Post reports that one ad was torn down within an hour of going up, and Gothamist has pictures of the uncharacteristically tasteful (and calculated) changes vandals have been making to the others.
The American Freedom Defense initiative is really not impressed, guys, and Pamela Geller, one of the forces behind the organization, went so far as to accuse the New York Post of soft, leftist leanings for its reportage of the story:
“[Post reporter Jennifer] Fermino seems to relish the defacing of the ads, but I think it’s nothing more than criminal activity. [...]This is a physical manifestation of the entire conversation, or lack thereof. Anyone who speaks about jihad and sharia is attacked, defamed, destroyed — just like these ads. This is exactly what’s happening in the media regarding jihad coverage in general. Anti-American, anti-Israel, pro-sharia hate is all over the airwaves, but anyone who dares to speak the truth about Islam and jihad in the media is immediately smeared and defamed.
Even [Jennifer Fermino's] headline ["Anti-Muslim Posters Spark Subway Fear"] is a lie. There are no fears, except on the part of the leftists and Islamic supremacists for whom Jennifer Fermino is carrying water.”
So, to summarize, New Yorkers are not at all concerned about safety, Americans are blindly trusting of Islamic culture, and the New York Post is now a touchy-feely liberal rag. Yep, sounds about right…
Update: Journalist Mona Eltahawy was arrested last night for spray painting over one of the ads, but not before a lengthy, uncomfortable altercation with Pamela Hall, a blogger and supporter of the ads who acted as a human shield to protect them. Naturally, there’s video of the entire thing:
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.