CAIR has come together with a diverse coalition of religious and civic organizations to urge advertisers to boycott Michael Savage’s radio talk show The Savage Nation. Joining a growing constituency of advertisers, three more major companies have already removed their ads from the nationally syndicated show.
Savage, who is often heard spouting hateful, anti-Muslim remarks, has filed a lawsuit against CAIR for making portions of his show available on the internet. “I don’t want to hear one more word about Islam,” said Savage in one broadcast. “Take your religion and shove it up your behind. I’m sick of you.”
Broad Coalition Formed
CAIR, which works to promote an accurate understanding of Islam and Muslims, joined theHate Hurts America Interfaith and Community Coalition (HHA) to address the rising problem of hatred against American minorities. The HHA is made up of diverse religious and civic organizations from Jewish, Christian, Latino, Sikh, secular and non-affiliated backgrounds. According to the HHA, “Hate hurts America by eroding our country’s great traditions of religious and cultural tolerance and mutual respect.”
Advertisers Drop Ads
More than a dozen companies have pulled their advertisements from Savage’s show due to the hateful nature of his comments. As of now, companies such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc., GEICO insurance company and Sprint Nextel Corp. have removed their ads from the show, costing The Savage Nation more that a million dollars in advertising revenue, according to theNew York Times.
Judge Urges Dismissal
In response to CAIR’s campaign, Savage filed a lawsuit against the civil rights advocacy group for rebroadcasting audio clips of his show that feature such plainly bigoted comments as “Muslims need deportation,” and “the Quran is a book of hate.”
At a hearing on March 7, U.S. District Judge Susan Illston of San Francisco said that she found much of CAIR’s position to be persuasive and that she had tentatively decided to dismiss the suit. She added, however, that she would probably allow Savage to refile the suit and fix its defects.
“Michael Savage is just unwilling to accept criticism going the other way,” CAIR’s attorney Thomas Burke said in an Associated Press article. “This lawsuit is about punishing CAIR for criticizing him.”
February 27, 2008
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