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Gun violence

US arms maker markets Christian assault rifle called 'The Crusader'

An arms maker in Florida is engraving Christian symbols on its assault rifles, in a marketing ploy denounced by a Muslim group as fomenting “hatred, division and violence.”

The “Crusader” assault rifle is inscribed with the cross of the Knights Templar, a religious order that fought in the Crusades, and a Bible passage — features that its maker, Spike’s Tactical, says are intended to keep the weapons out of Muslim hands.

“We wanted to make sure we built a weapon that would never be able to be used by Muslim terrorists to kill innocent people or advance their radical agenda,” said Ben “Mookie” Thomas, spokesman for the company, which is based in Apopka, Florida.

In a promotional video (see above), “Mookie” explains, “I just blurted out, ‘I want a rifle that no Muslim trrrrrist can use to murder innocent people. And, uh, I half expected to be fired or at least not taken serious [sic]. But they took the ball and they ran with it.”

‘God’s assault rifle’

The assault rifle is inscribed with the words “God Wills It,” along with Psalm 144:1: “Blessed be the Lord, my rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle.”

According to “Mookie,” who claims the rifles have been a hit with the company’s customers, “The Christian symbols would prevent the guns from being shipped to the Middle East.”

“We sold out of rifles in the first 72 hours and there’s a backlog of several weeks,” he said, declining to say how many have sold.

“God Wills It.”

(Screengrab from Spike’s Tactical Crusader PR video)

The Florida branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations issued a statement decrying “this manufacturer’s fancy new gun.”

“This is just another shameful marketing ploy intended to profit from the promotion of hatred, division, and violence,” it said.

Thomas, asserting he is not a bigot, insisted: “If they think the word of Jesus Christ causes hatred, they don’t understand Jesus Christ.”

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Harry Ballza

This article is very poorly written and shows strong bias in opposition. Should be posted under opinion section rather than news. I applaud anyone bring new ideas to market in these dreadful market conditions. Also, please define “assault rifle” in your article. The definition is “a rapid-fire, magazine-fed automatic rifle designed for infantry use.” These firearms are SEMI-automatic, thus do not qualify for the classification of assault rifle. Your article is promoting hatred and bias for firearms in general. Irony.

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