Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Judge Helps Stop City Authorities From Censoring Ex-Muslims Help Ads

By Drew Zahn
© 2011 WorldNetDaily

A federal judge in Michigan has ordered a Detroit-area transportation authority to allow, for the time being, display of paid advertisements on buses that offer help for those wanting to leave Islam.

As WND reported, the Suburban Mobility Authority for Regional Transportation, or SMART, had permitted an ad from an atheist and humanist organization touting "Don't believe in God? You're not alone" but had refused to sell advertising space for the message "Fatwa on your head? Is your family or community threatening you? Leaving Islam? Got questions? Get answers!"

The ads direct people to a website,

But with the help of the Thomas More Law Center, a lawsuit was filed on behalf of the ad's sponsors. The lawsuit asked the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan Southern Division, to issue a preliminary injunction to permit the ad to run pending the final outcome of the litigation.

Earlier this week, Judge Denise Page Hood granted the injunction, clearing the way for the ads to begin appearing on Detroit-area buses.

TMLC Senior Trial Counsel Rob Muise commented, "In this environment of political correctness, it is encouraging to see decisions such as this one that uphold our basic constitutional freedoms."

The ad was sponsored by the Freedom Defensive Initiative, or FDI, through the work of Pamela Geller of Atlas Shrugs and Robert Spencer of JihadWatch.

Richard Thompson, president of TMLC, commented, "Senior Trial Lawyer Rob Muise and David Yerushalmi have successfully represented FDI in several cases. Judge Hood's instant decision represents a victory for free speech, but the battle is not over. Other battles loom on the horizon."

WND reported a similar case in which the Miami-Dade Transit pulled down similar ads on its buses because of complaints from activist Muslims.

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