Stars and Stripes online edition, Friday, April 2, 2010
ARLINGTON, Va. — After his son was killed in the attack on the USS Cole, Jesse Nieto put decals on his car that included “Islam=Terrorism” and “We Died, They Rejoiced.”
But the Marine Corps deemed the decals offensive and told them he had to remove them or he could not park on federal installations.
So he went to court, and won.
Nieto works at North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune, which bans “extremist, indecent, sexist and racist” decals, court records say.
But a federal judge ruled Wednesday that the base cannot ban anti-Islamic decals while allowing decals that say “Islam is Love” or “Islam is Peace.”
“While the military may have greater leeway in restricting offensive material in furtherance of securing order and discipline among its troops, it may not do so in a manner that allows ‘one message while prohibiting the messages of those who can reasonably be expected to respond,’” wrote Senior U.S. District Judge Malcolm Howard.