(WASHINGTON, D.C., 7/19/15) — The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation's largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, today said it will call on the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to investigate possible federal civil rights violations by businesses in Florida and New Hampshire that have been declared “Muslim free zones.”
CAIRÂ says thatÂ systematicallyÂ banning MuslimsÂ from such businesses is a violation of federal laws prohibiting racial and religious discrimination in public accommodations.
Florida Gun Supply in Inverness, Fla., produced and distributed a video in which a representative of the business appears before a Confederate flag and announces the “Muslim free zone” as a response to the recent shooting in Chattanooga, Tenn.
In the video, that representative also defends the Confederate flag as a symbol of “heritage,” blames the election of President Obama for a rise in racism and decries the “lies” of American leaders that “Islam is not evil.”
The video drew racist and Islamophobic Facebook posts, including (grammatical and spelling errors maintained):
* “Please people, remember to pre dip all ammo in pigs blood.” To which Florida Gun Supply replied: “We sell gun oil that is made out of 13% pig fat LOL.”
* “cover the front door handle in pig skin, and put a cartoon of muhammad, on it as well. that will do it for sure. gun up peep's it is the way of the new world.” Florida Gun Supply replied: “LOOOOOOOL!”
* “Keep bacon on hand if they won't touch it they are a devoted muslim.” Florida Gun Supply replied: “Good idea!”
When asked online how the business will enforce the “Muslim free zone,” Florida Gun Supply wrote: “We'll ask if they seem sketchy, and ask them to leave,” to which another person wrote: “Free bacon samples! Gotta eat a piece, for entry!,” and Florida Gun Supply responded, “HAHAHAHA!”
In a comment posted in response to the Florida Gun Supply declaration, a person who identifies himself as “Randy MacArthur” wrote:Â “I am an owner of Granite State Guns & Survival Gear In New Hampshire I stand beside you 100% We too are a Muslim free zone!!!”
“These bigoted declarations are no different than 'whites only' signs posted in businesses during a period of our nation's history that we had hoped was over,” said CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper. “The Department of Justice must investigate these hate-filled and un-American business practices to determine whether federal civil rights laws are being violated.”
Hooper urged anyone who faces discrimination from such businesses to file a complaint with CAIR at:Â http://www.cair.com/civil-rights/report-an-incident.html
Earlier this year, CAIR received a letter from the DOJ informing the Washington-based civil rights organization of the decision to “monitor” a Hot Springs, Ark., shooting range that has been declared a “Muslim-free zone” by its owner.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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