Dietary Supplement Company Issues Offensive Anti-Terrorist Flier

January 18, 2006

Source: The State/St. Louis Post-Dispatch

On January 18, 2006 St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported, "What in the world do dietary supplements have to do with turbans and terrorism? That political head-scratcher confronted at least some vitamin buyers around the nation who found a flier with their mail-order nutrients carrying the bold headline, 'Get a Turban for Durbin!' An image shows Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., wearing the headwrap, common in parts of the Middle East and south Asia and sacred religious garb in some faiths, including the entire Sikh religion. The flier's kicker: 'Keep Congressional Terrorists At Bay.' The flier was distributed last month by a pro-vitamin and supplement group, [Nutritional Health Alliance based in Melville, N.Y.]... Dietary supplement makers attack Durbin because he wants regulation requiring them to report serious side effects of their products... More than a million copies of the flier were sent to vitamin and supplement buyers... Now, a new flier - a newsletter making specific arguments against Durbin's proposals - has been substituted in mailings. Experts and scholars say the flier is a sign of the times: Political vitriol has always pushed the envelope, and it seems anti-Arab and anti-Muslim prejudice today is almost vogue."