The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today said it will offer a free copy of Islam's holy text, the Quran, to anyone who wishes to verify the inaccuracy of a new anti-Muslim bus advertisement in Washington, D.C.
The anti-Muslim ad, which is sponsored by a hate group led by Pamela Geller, falsely claims that the Quran encourages Muslims to hate Jews. Her organization, Stop the Islamization of America (SIOA), is designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). SPLC also named Geller as a member of the "anti-Muslim inner circle."
Geller, who has bragged online that she uses a Quran as a doorstop, was the subject of a CAIR "Islamophobe profile" documenting the individuals and organizations involved in spreading anti-Muslim bias in the United States. CAIR also listed her as a member of the "inner core" of those promoting anti-Muslim bigotry.
Her group SIOA was recently denied a trademark after an appeals court ruled that the name disparaged Muslims.
"We encourage those who view Geller's false and inflammatory ads to visit CAIR's 'Explore the Quran' website to request a free copy of the Quran so they can read it for themselves," said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. "Anyone who reads the Quran will discover that it honors Jews and Christians for believing in one God and calls on all believers to live in peace and harmony."
Those wishing to obtain a free Quran should visit: www.explorethequran.com/request-a-quran/american-public.html
Awad said people who read the Quran would come across verses such as:
"Verily, those who have attained to faith [in this divine writ], as well as those who follow the Jewish faith, and the Christians, and the Sabians - all who believe in God and the Last Day and do righteous deeds - shall have their reward with their Sustainer; and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve." (2:62)
"Say: 'We believe in God, and in that which has been bestowed from on high upon us, and that which has been bestowed upon Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and their descendants, and that which has been vouchsafed to Moses and Jesus; and that which has been vouchsafed to all the [other] prophets by their Sustainer: we make no distinction between any of them. And it is unto Him that we surrender ourselves.'" (2:136)
"O humankind! Behold, We have created you all out of a male and a female, and have made you into nations and tribes, so that you might come to know one another. Verily, the noblest of you in the sight of God is the one who is most deeply conscious of Him. Behold, God is all-knowing, all-aware." (49:13)
In 2012, a broad-based coalition of 127 organizations sent a letter to the Washington Area Metro Transit Authority (WMATA) expressing concern about Geller's previous anti-Muslim advertisements.
A CAIR ad placed to counter Geller's 2012 campaign featured a verse from the Quran stating: "Show forgiveness, speak for justice and avoid the ignorant." (The Holy Quran, 7:199)