Jihawg Ammo, the company started by Brendon and Julie Hill of Coer D'Alene, Idaho, sells boxes of gun cartridges that are made with pork products and advertised as being a deterrent to potential terrorists who may not eat pork because of their religious beliefs.
"With Jihawg Ammo, you don't just kill an Islamist terrorist, you also send him to hell," the company said in a press release earlier this month. "That should give would-be martyrs something to think about before they launch an attack. If it ever becomes necessary to defend yourself and those around you our ammo works on two levels."
Brendon Hill, who developed the technology for the cartridges with his wife, said that the idea behind the ammunition was that if a devout Muslim were thinking of carrying out a terrorist attack, they might be deterred by knowing they could be shot with bullets covered in pork, a religiously forbidden food.
He is not promoting violence toward Muslims, he insisted. In fact, the company also makes apparel promoting "Peace Through Pork."
Brendon said that he and his wife started the company as a tongue-in-cheek way to stand up to radical Islamic terrorists.
"We're having some fun with it," Hill said. "There's something to be said about using sarcasm to reveal truth about something that is false ora lie, and we're focusing on the absolute lie they tell that murdering people is good."
"We realize we've hit an emotional thread, and I'd loosely define this as a red-state/blue-state issue," Hill added. "That's where our customers are coming from and in that demographic, our product is a way to push back against political correctness. It's the proverbial middle finger back to political correctness."
Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the Hills were trying to exploit Muslims for their own profit.
"This is just one of many individuals and companies who seek to make a quick buck exploiting the growing Islamaphobia in our society," Hooper said. "We're not motivated by giving them free publicity they so desperately seek. That's their intention -- to get people upset so that they talk about it and they make money.
"If somebody did actually use one of these bullets to target a Muslim," he added, "I am sure that a hate crime enhancement would fit."
The Hills came up with the idea while camping with friends and talking about the "Ground Zero Mosque," the name given by opponents to an Islamic cultural center in New York City that was going to open near the World Trade Center site.
They were angry over the center and what Hill called "a wave of radical Islam perpetuating from the Middle East to Europe to here."
Brendon Hill said his wife, stay-at-home mom Julie, came up with the idea and the name.
Brendon, who used to work for the NRA as a fundraiser, said he drew on his undergraduate science degree and tinkered with the formula for making the ammunition, figuring out how to add pork products to the paint on gun cartridges while ensuring that the paint still works.
They started selling their product earlier this spring.
"What we do is take industry base paint, a type of ballistic paint, and it took us a year to formulate how pork product that goes into it is still viable," Hill said. "The paint still has to function and stick to metal, but also be haraam or unclean."
U.S. Forces Burn Old Copies of the Koran Watch Video He said that since they launched their website quietly two or three months ago, the Hills have been inundated with orders for their custom cartridges, which retail for about $20 for a box of cartridges. The reaction to their product has been almost universally positive.
"We've only got one voicemail that was negative and that was from somewhere overseas," he said. "We are getting steamrolled by orders."
However, Hooper, speaking from CAIR's headquarters in Washington, D.C., did not react positively.
"They're taking their own stereotypes and making it into their own idiocy, and unfortunately there are a lot of idiots to buy into this stuff," he said.