Religious leaders in the US state of Indiana have jointly denounced an “anti-Muslim” billboard and called for tolerance and understanding. At a press conference in the capital Indianapolis, the leaders on Friday expressed their commitment to a diverse faith community, reports Xinhua news agency.
“This particular instance may be against Muslims,” said John Clark, an Evangelical Christian and director of development of the Centre for Interfaith Cooperation, “but if anyone is threatened or vulnerable, we all are.” The billboard, which stands next to an interstate highway is titled “The Perfect Man”. Underneath are six bullet points to describe that man, including “married a 6-year-old”, “slave owner and dealer” and “13 wives, 11 at one time”.
A businessman in Virginia told the Indianapolis Star daily he owns the billboard, but declined to say what group paid for the ad. Faryal Khatri from the Islamic Society of North America said the billboard meant to incite hate, “but the opposite has happened”.
Representatives of the Sikh and Roman Catholic communities and a rabbi were also present at the press conference.