Radio Station Inciting 'Anti-Muslim Hatred,' Group Says

By Melanie Arter | July 7, 2008 | 8:05 PM EDT

( - An Islamic civil rights group Wednesday called on a Washington, D.C. radio station to address what it says is "an incitement of anti-Muslim hatred" by the station's talk show hosts.

This comes after WMAL talk show host Michael Graham was suspended without pay for comments he made calling Islam "a terrorist organization." On Friday, Graham's replacement host, Geoff Metcalf, claimed on the air that the Koran gives Muslims "permission to lie when it is appropriate."

"And by the way, let me just add a sidebar here that's significant, and everybody forgets this, but according to the Quran, believers in Islam are not required to tell infidels, and that's us, the truth. So they apparently have permission to lie when it is appropriate," said Metcalf, according to the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

According to CAIR, most of the listeners who called in "expressed similar hostility to Muslims and to the faith of Islam."

"We are strong supporters of the First Amendment, but it is disingenuous to misuse it as a shield for incitement to religious hatred," said CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper in a statement Wednesday.

"WMAL needs to address the promotion of Islamophobia by its talk show hosts if the station is to maintain credibility with mainstream listeners and advertisers," said Hooper.

Upon Graham's suspension, WMAL President and General Manager Chris Berry said that Graham's statements "crossed the line," adding that "We do not condone his position and believe his statements were irresponsible."

CAIR called on area Muslims to contact WMAL advertisers and "express their concerns" over Metcalf's remarks. CAIR also urged people of all faiths to get a free copy of the Koran.

See Earlier Story:
Talk Show Host Under Fire for Comments About Islam (July 26, 2005)

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