Last week, Andy Hallinan, the store owner of Florida Gun Supply, declared his business to be a “Muslim-free zone” via a Youtube video. “I will not arm and train those who wish to do harm to my fellow patriots,” Hallinan tells viewers as he sits in front of a Confederate battle flag. This is how they keep it classy in the 352.
Andy, you may want to re-think your policy, because you’re focusing on the wrong demographic when it comes to domestic terror attacks.
Since 2001, domestic lethal terrorist attacks from white supremacists and anti-government groups (19) have more than doubled those of jihadists (7), according to the non-partisan research group, New America.
The New America study shows 48 people have died in “Deadly Right Wing Attacks,” nearly double the 26 individuals that have been killed in “Deadly Jihadist Attacks.”
The University of North Carolina’s Charles Kurzman and Duke University’s director of the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security David Schanzer, recently revealed the results of their survey with police agencies on violent extremism in the United States.
Kurzman & Schanzer write in a piece published by The New York Times:
“In a survey we conducted with the Police Executive Research Forum last year of 382 law enforcement agencies, 74 percent reported anti-government extremism as one of the top three terrorist threats in their jurisdiction; 39 percent listed extremism connected with Al Qaeda or like-minded terrorist organizations. And only 3 percent identified the threat from Muslim extremists as severe, compared with 7 percent for anti-government and other forms of extremism.”
In April 2014, patriot and militia groups famously targeted law enforcement officials during the Bundy Ranch Standoff.
For 20 years, Rancher Cliven Bundy had been illegally using government lands for cattle grazing. Once wranglers hired by the government began to wrangle Bundy’s cattle off the property, various militia groups and self proclaimed patriots arrived heavily armed to support the rancher.
“We didn’t show any fear that day, but I can tell you, we all thought in the back of our minds, we all thought it was going to be our last day on earth, if it went bad,” Las Vegas Metro Police Sgt. Tom Jenkins told Vegas’ 8 News Now.
Although there was no bloodshed at the ranch, two months later Bundy supporters Jared and Amanda Miller would go on to murder two Las Vegas police officers. The unsuspecting officers were eating at CiCi’s Pizza when the married couple shot them, covering one body with the Gadsden flag.
Shortly after the 2:00 minute mark of his nearly five minute video, Andy explains to his fellow patriots they’re “in battle” with “Islamic extremism” and “extreme political correctness that threatens our lives.” Not being able to say a racial slur is literally going to kill this guy.
Andy explains his latest policy is in response to the Chattanooga shootings.
Five people were murdered on July 16th when Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez opened fire on an Armed Forces Career Center and a naval reserve center. The case is still under investigation and a motive has yet to be determined.
Interestingly, no such rule was instituted on white supremacists when caucasian Dylann Storm Roof shot and killed nine people in the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.
Why does it take Andy two minutes to get to the point of his new policy? Because he spends the opening defending the Confederate battle flag as a symbol of heritage and a “willingness for patriots to stand up against tyranny of all sorts.” Of course, that “tyranny of all sorts” was originally the North denouncing slavery, followed by the interracial mixing of our armed forces and then the Civil Rights Movement.
“I’m flying this flag today not because I’m a racist, because I’m not. And I’m not intolerant of others.”
You’re not intolerant of others? Dude, the point of your video is to ban an entire group of people from your public business.
After his “racist” line, he might as well have pulled the “I have a lot of black friends” card.
Inspired by Andy Hallinan’s act of ignorance, Kentucky gun store Jace Firearms also declared itself a “Muslim-free zone.”
Like in Andy’s video, co-owner Jill Stidham hung up a Confederate battle flag in the store’s front window.
“We’re losing more and more of our freedom everyday. We used to live in a free country. I don’t feel like we live in a free country any more.” Stidham told her local CBS affiliate station.
Naturally, Stidham doesn’t elaborate on what freedoms she has lost.
Stidham also seems to be unaware that her rights as a gun owner were actually extended under Obama’s first administration.
“The boom in patriot groups was pretty much a direct response to the election of Obama and what that election represented, the big demographic change happening in this country. A very significant slice of the population saw this as a terrible thing and felt that their country had been taken from them,” Senior Fellow of the Southern Poverty Law Center Mark Potok told HBO’s “Vice.”
Patriot groups numbered just 149 in 2008. In 2009, Barack Obama’s first year in office, that number more than doubled to 512 groups. By the time of Obama’s re-election, the anti-government patriot groups were at 1,360.
“This is a world that really worships weapons and weaponry and fighting. And their idea is that the government is somehow everyday becoming more tyrannical. It’s easy to kind of laugh these groups off but we ignore the threat from the American domestic radical right at our peril.”
According to his video’s end title card, Andy’s solution to today’s issues are “…get armed. Get trained. Carry daily.”
Andy, you don’t need a gun. You need a library card, buddy.