EJP Reports: A US lawmaker called Wednesday for a boycott of public transit systems in Washington and other cities running a pro-Israel advertisement that denounces “the savage” in Muslim countries. The advertisements, which have also run on trains in New York and buses in San Francisco, went up this week at four stations in the US capital area after a federal judge ruled that the group enjoyed a right to free speech.
Citing security concerns, the operator of the Metro had sought to delay the billboards, which read: “In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad.”
Representative Mike Honda, a Democrat from California, said he supported the US Constitution’s guarantee of free speech and understood the court order for the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority to run the advertisements.
But “the right to not support hate speech is also a right, which is why I encourage people to boycott, if possible, WMATA” and public transit in the other places where the ad is running until the ad buys are finished, Honda said in a statement.
“We do not have to support hate speech,” he added.
Honda, who as a child was interned at a camp due to his Japanese ancestry, said he took the issue “very personally” because he remembered the “hateful billboards and caricatures that equated Japanese Americans to savages” during World War II.