By Jesse Marx
By Chris Parker
By Jake Rossen
By Jesse Marx
By Michelle LeBow
By Alleen Brown
By Maggie LaMaack
By CP Staff
A Wisconsin fireworks store got a different kind of explosion this Fourth of July weekend.
The state is used to Minnesotans flocking over the border to get fireworks that are illegal here. But in this case, the store, Fireworks City, was bombarded with angry customers and Muslim groups who said their "Run, Hadji, Run" fireworks were flat-out racist.
The $30 fireworks package features men in traditional Muslim attire riding camels as a fighter plane flies overhead. On the back of the package, Uncle Sam is yanking the beard of another man dressed in traditional Muslim attire—possibly Osama Bin Laden. Apparently this company's idea of a patriotic fireworks celebration is pretty offensive to everyone else with some common sense. After a firestorm of protest, the Baldwin, Wisconsin, store pulled the product from its shelves.
The package is manufactured by Red Rhino Fireworks and is still displayed on that company's website.
The Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-MN) welcomed the immediate action from the business after it was contacted about the offensive product.
"We appreciate the quick response of the retailer to Muslim concerns and hope that everyone can enjoy the July Fourth holiday in an inclusive environment," said CAIR-MN communications director Jessica Zikri in a statement.
The term "Hadji" is considered an honorific term for those who have made the pilgrimage to Mecca, but is often used as a derogatory term for Muslims in Iraq, CAIR-MN says.
CAIR-MN also contacted the manufacturer in Missouri, asking the company to take similar action and remove the product from other stores.
Some people apparently can't get into the Fourth of July spirit. One St. Paul man was so enraged by the amateur fireworks in his neighborhood that he allegedly took the problem into his own hands and shot one of the offending teens in the neck.
While a group of people was setting off fireworks in the street near East Belvidere Street and Oakdale Avenue on the city's West Side, one 14-year-old boy suddenly grabbed his neck, and blood started flowing. People first thought he had been hit by a stray firecracker, but medics quickly realized he had suffered a gunshot wound.
Police tracked down and jailed a 49-year-old neighbor on suspicion of aggravated assault in the shooting. Officials believe he was so mad about the fireworks in his neighborhood that he shot the boy to make it all stop.
The teen is in critical but stable condition and is expected to survive.
The red-band movie trailer for Diablo Cody's upcoming Jennifer's Body was just released. We have to admit, it looks a little more dark and entertaining than we were expecting.
We'll give Cody a chance on this one. There aren't many new horror films we actually think could prove to be worth the $9 ticket price. As long as you know what to expect, of course: possessed cheerleader, sex, naked Megan Fox.
Jennifer's Body debuts in theaters this September. Fox plays a possessed cheerleader who goes around eating boys.