The Florida Family Association is blaming Anonymous for taking down its website after the social conservative group pressured Lowe’s to pull its advertising from the TV show All-American Muslim.
David Caton, executive director of the Florida Family Association, said that a hacker claiming to be from the hacktivist collective Anonymous took down the website Monday night in retaliation for the Lowe’s campaign, only leaving up the message that the group was “destroying our free speech,” the St. Petersburg Times reports.
At the time of writing the FFA site was just one page that referenced the attack in a message from Caton: “No further proof is needed of the potential for vicious action then [sic] exactly what these folks are trying to do to this web site!”
“In a country that supposedly embraces free speech,” he continues, “those that oppose our postion [sic] have no qualms about destroying our free speech. Yet, these same folks claim the Internet should not be restricted in any way. How the two conflicting postions [sic] can be reconciled in their minds is beyond comprehension.”
“Because of our real concern for the terrorism that is a way of life for some folks, we ourselves have become victims. Because we urge others to be vigilant, we become the targets,” Caton says.
Though it’s always difficult to nail down whether or not Anonymous was responsible for an attack, the Twitter user @ihazcAnNONz posted messages Monday night taking credit for the attack in Anonymous’ name. #AntiSec #Anonymous oHai #FFA you feel that bro? that’s cannon fire up your ass Dropped DUMP : http://t.co/7GujggKS working on that #HASH.”
And the site AnonNews links to an article at the Examiner that reports on a press release reportedly by LulzSec taking credit for the attack: “Anonymous will not stand for hate and divisive vitriol to be spread across our country and whenever we can…we will stop it…FFA you managed to use your power to influence Lowe’s to follow you into your racist stupor and they too will answer for that…”
The FFA has been blasted left and right for organizing its supporters to successfully pressure the hardware company Lowe’s to pull its ads from the TLC show All-American Muslim. Lowe’s itself was criticized Monday by everyone from Russell Simmons to Kal Penn for caving to Islamophobes, and for issuing a backhanded apology that said “individuals and groups have strong political and societal views on this topic” and “we’ve managed to make some people very unhappy.”