WASHINGTON - Police at George Washington University have launched an investigation after someone plastered Islamophobia posters around campus. However, it turns out whoever did post the anti-Muslim flyer tried to make it look like it came from an on-campus conservative group. The group said they were framed and it is not the first time they have been harassed.
The George Washington University chapter of the Young America’s Foundation spent Monday morning putting up thousands of flags in remembrance of the Sept. 11 terror attacks. They said this is what they stand for – patriotism and respect.
But Shannon Bell, the president of GW's chapter, said these anti-Islamic fliers are a case of reverse hate speech.
"When we first saw this, we were shocked and disgusted because this is not what we stand for, and we are really disappointed to see that someone would try to attack us,” said Bell.
Why would someone want to do this?
“Honestly, over my years here at GW, I can't help but think it is because we are a conservative organization,” she said.
One of the inflammatory posters says, “Hate Muslims? So do we!!!” It also contains references that describes what is “your typical Muslim.” It lists things such as "lasers in eyes," "venom in mouth," "hidden AK-47," "suicide vest," "hatred for women" and "peg-leg for smuggling children and heroin."
The conservative group said this is not the first time they have been the target of dirty tricks or harassment on campus. Bell believes the university has a double standard. If a liberal group is targeted, she said there is swift and decision action. But it is not the case when a conservative group is the target.
Peter Konwerski, the vice provost and dean of student affairs at George Washington University, said that is not true and said the university is taking this very seriously.
“We work closely with all student organizations and we want to make sure that it is an inclusive environment for everyone,” he said. “We want any student who feels there is something that is disrespectful or disruptive brought to our attention and we want to look into it and try to remedy it.”
University officials said they first learned about this incident on Friday. Since that time, the campus police department has launched an investigation and the goal is to bring to justice for the person responsible for the faked flyers.