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Muslim Basher Softens Up

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    MUSLIM-BASHING SIGN RETRACTED FOR NOW ANNE LINDBERG, St. Petersburg Times, 7/31/05 http://www.sptimes.com PINELLAS PARK - Ahmed Bedier went to photograph the
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 31, 2005
      MUSLIM-BASHING SIGN RETRACTED FOR NOW
      ANNE LINDBERG, St. Petersburg Times, 7/31/05
      http://www.sptimes.com

      PINELLAS PARK - Ahmed Bedier went to photograph the anti-Muslim
      display that stood boldly last week in a front yard on 62nd Avenue N.

      But when the Central Florida director of the Council on
      American-Islamic Relations realized the property owner was home, he
      made a bold move.

      "I knocked on the door and had a conversation with him," Bedier said.
      "I asked him why he was doing it and why he had the display."

      Mike Allen's display featured a toilet with a red-lettered sign that
      read, "Koran flushing. 1 p.m."

      Allen said he explained that the tableau was his way of protesting
      what he saw as the failure of Muslim clerics to condemn terrorism and
      the actions that resulted in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

      Allen was a bit surprised by Bedier's response.

      "He said, "I feel the same way about those terrorists you do,' " Allen
      said.

      Bedier went out to his car and brought back his laptop computer. Then
      he showed Allen the press releases and articles that CAIR had issued
      to condemn terrorism and explain Islam to U.S. citizens. He also
      showed Allen a video of a public service announcement that CAIR
      recently released. The video, like the press releases, condemns terrorism.

      "He was surprised to see those different things and that we're
      actually taking action," Bedier said.

      Bedier also showed Allen pictures of his wife and child.

      Then Bedier asked Allen to remove the display.

      Allen said he agreed because Bedier had been "so nice."

      "We took pictures of me removing the sign," Allen said. "I took it
      back over to the trash cans . . . and I put that sign in the trash can."

      He also got rid of the toilet.

      Allen said, "I told him I wished I had some bread in the house. We'd
      break bread."

      Instead, the two ate grapes and cantaloupe.

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