Opinion Brief

The controversial 'Ground Zero mosque' ad

Were network TV executives justified in banning this "inflammatory" ad protesting plans to build a mosque near Ground Zero?

NBC and CBS have rejected an ad produced by the National Republican Trust PAC that condemns plans to build a mosque near Manhattan's Ground Zero. Using shocking images of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center, the ad, titled "Kill the Ground Zero Mosque," avers that "they" want to "build a monstrous 13-story mosque at Ground Zero" to "celebrate the murder of 3,000 Americans" — without clarifying whether "they" refers to terrorists or the Muslims seeking to build the mosque. Ignore this "stunt," says Greg Sargent in The Washington Post. The ad is "so inflammatory" the PAC most likely made it simply to get "free press attention." If you ask me, says Frank Ross in Big Journalism, "conflating Islamic extremists with those behind the Ground Zero mosque" is precisely the "right" response to the latter's outrageous proposal. The real outrage, says Jim Newell in Gawker, is that this "disgusting ad" has prompted people to give money to the PAC. Watch the disputed commercial below:

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