A Florida gun shop owner is drawing criticism after declaring his store a "Muslim-free zone" in a video posted on the business' Facebook page.
Andy Hallinan, owner of Florida Gun Supply in Inverness, said the move was made as a "drastic" response to last week's shootings in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
"Our leaders are telling you that Islam is a peaceful religion, full of tolerance and love and hope. Don't believe their lies," Hallinan says in the video, which was posted over the weekend. "We are in battle patriots, but not only with Islamic extremism. We are also in battle against extreme political correctness that threatens our lives because if we can’t call evil 'evil' for fear of offending people, then we can’t really defeat our enemies."
Hallinan says he's offering free conceal and carry classes and free use of his gun range.
"I have a moral and legal responsibility to ensure the safety of all patriots in my community," Hallinan says. "So effective immediately, I'm declaring Florida Gun Supply as a Muslim-free zone. I will not arm and train those who wish to do harm to my fellow patriots.”
The video begins with Hallinan sitting in front of a Confederate flag and defending it as a part of the Southern heritage.
“This flag represents nothing but the rich heritage of the South and the willingness of patriots to stand up against tyranny of all sorts,” Hallinan says. "I'm flying this flag today not because I'm a racist, because I'm not, and I'm not intolerant of others."
The video already had more than 50,000 views as of Tuesday, along with more than 700 comments.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations is calling for the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate possible federal civil rights violations by the business.
"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," CAIR spokesman Ibrahim Hooper said in a statement. "The Department of Justice must investigate these hate-filled and un-American business practices to determine whether federal civil rights laws are being violated."
Hallinan said he's standing by the video.
"I'm not going to be asking every person that walks in what their religious background is, that's not my business," he told WFLA. "But I do have the right to deny service of firearms or training to anyone I deem as a threat."