A Florida gun store owner says he has the right to deny firearms to anyone he sees as a threat, and has decided to ban Muslims from his store in response to the shootings at Navy facilities in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
Andy Hallinan declared Florida Gun Supply in Inverness a “Muslim-free zone” in a video posted online Saturday.
According to the store’s Facebook account, the decision was in response to Kuwait-born Muslim, Mohammad Youssef Abdulazeez, opening fire and killing five service members at Navy facilities in Chattanooga last week.
“I have a moral and legal responsibility to ensure the safety of all patriots in my community, and so effective immediately, I’m declaring Florida Gun Supply as a Muslim-free zone,” he said in the video on Facebook. “I will not arm and train those who wish to do harm to my fellow patriots.”
The video had been viewed more than 35,000 times by Tuesday morning.
“I’m not going to be asking every person who walks in what their religious background is. That’s not my business,” he told WFLA. “But I do have the right to deny firearms and training to anyone I deem as a threat.”
Critics have argued the ban will ultimately be deemed illegal, but Hallinan says he made the decision in an effort to fight back against political correctness.
“We are in battle, patriots, but not only with Islamic extremism,” he said. “We’re 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.”
According to WFLA, the Department of Justice said they will be investigating the store for possible civil rights violations connected to its “Muslim-free” policy.
Hallinan appeared on Carol Costello’s program on CNN Tuesday to defend his store’s new policy: