Anti-Islam activist and self-styled free speech advocate Pam Geller tangled with CNN host Alisyn Camerota on Monday morning,
The on-air dustup occured after two gunmen were killed on Sunday after opening fire on a security officer at an event Geller organized in Garland, Texas. Her organization, the American Freedom Defense Initiative, was hosting a contest to draw cartoons of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, a taboo that has led to violence in the past.
Camerota quoted the keynote speaker for the event, Dutch politician Geert Wilders, about why “Judeo-Christian culture is far superior to the Islamic one,” describing the Muslim faith as “wrong,” “evil,” “foolish,” and “ridiculous.”
Camerota told Geller that quotes like that supported her critics, who have long said that Geller and her allies attack Muslims and Islam in general rather than violent extremists.
“But what did he say that wasn’t true?” Geller asked.
“I’ll tell you what he said that wasn’t true,” Camerota interrupted. “He said that Islam does not allow humor. Now, I mean, do you, Pam, do you know anyone who is Muslim?”
“Of course!” Geller said.
“And do you think they’re humorless?” Camerota said.
“Listen, you’re being very condescending,” Geller said.
Geller went on to talk about “the Ayatollah Khomeini,” but Camerota moved on and read Geller a quote from one of several Muslim leaders that publicly supported her right to hold the conference, even though the leader found it bigoted and ignorant.
“This is a Muslim leader who is attacking me and insulting me, and ad hominem attacks — isn’t that generous of her?” Geller said.
“It just seems that you don’t draw the distinction between extremism and violence and Islam as a whole,” Camerota said.
“And you don’t draw the distinction between civilized men and savages,” Geller said.
Camerota told Geller that she thought critics had a point in attacking her work and Sunday’s conference as anti-Islam.
“No, you paint with a broad brush,” Geller said. “I am anti-jihad. I am anti-sharia. You, by saying I paint with a broad brush, are saying all Muslims support jihad.”
“Alisyn,” Geller added, “you sound very Islamaphobic.”
Watch the clip, courtesy of CNN: