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At first glance, the billboard recently installed on Interstate 95 seems like an endorsement of President Donald Trump, with “Making America Great” front and center on the advertisement.
Located between exits for Sunrise and Oakland Park boulevards, the billboard features an adaptation of Trump’s campaign slogan, and it’s doused in a patriotic blend of red, white and blue.
For Muslim leaders in Florida, it’s the latest attempt to call attention to how their community is “Making America Great with love, compassion and mercy.” The billboard will be displayed during the final week of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month that ends on Saturday.
Thirty similar billboards have been plastered across the country this year as a part of an educational campaign, according to the Florida branch of the Islamic Circle of North America, a volunteer-based organization that sponsored the signs.
When Trump was running for president, he called for a “total and complete” ban on Muslims entering the United States. As president, he has attempted to ban travelers from six predominately Muslim countries: Libya, Sudan, Syria, Iran, Yemen and Somali. The courts have blocked the travel ban, calling the proposed measure unconstitutional based on religious grounds.
“Everyone in our nation is making America great when we all work together to serve neighbors and solve our problems,” ICNA Florida spokesman Abdulrauf Khan said in a statement released Saturday. The group’s volunteers operate a women’s shelter in South Florida, provide refugee services and regularly feed homeless people, which the group says demonstrates their commitment to service.
The billboard, located on Southbound 1-95, features a link to WhyIslam.com, a website that features information on Islam and a toll-free number for those interested in asking questions about the faith.