Sunday, September 24, 2006

Jihad car sales

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A car dealership's tongue-in-cheek radio advertisement declaring "a jihad on the automotive market," will not be changed, the company said, despite drawing sharp criticism that the ad's content is offensive.

Several stations rejected the spot from Dennis Mitsubishi, which boasts that sales representatives wearing "burqas" -- head-to-toe traditional dress for Islamic women -- will sell vehicles that can "comfortably seat 12 jihadists in the back."

The Columbus chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations decried the ad as disrespectful.

"Using that as a promotional pitch when so many are dying from the criminal activity of suicide bombers, that's not funny," chapter president Asma Mobin-Uddin said. "I don't think it's appropriate when it causes real pain. It exploits or promotes misunderstanding in terms already misunderstood or misused."

In the ad, Keith Dennis of Dennis Mitsubishi talks about a "launching a jihad on the automotive market."

The ads will begin airing next week, dealership general manager Aaron Masterson said, although it was unclear whether any radio stations had accepted the spot.

A message was left seeking additional comment at Dennis Mitsubishi on Saturday.

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