Alpha Brewing Co. on Wednesday revealed the image of a new label that manages to attack the entire religion of Islam. “Alpha Akbar,” one part of the label reads. “This smoked ale will blow your mind.”
St. Louis Today & River Front Times (h/t Nimrod) Alpha Brewing Co. on Wednesday revealed via Twitter the image of a new label that manages to attack the entire religion of Islam.
The label in question is for Submission Ale, a smoked brown ale. The graphic on the label shows a drawing of a pig wearing what appears to be a burka. The label copy reads, “Alpha Akbar! This smoked ale will blow your mind. Denounce everything you thought and knew about beer in the name of Alpha. Let your tastebuds explode. Submit to the smokey flavor. Shove this down your throat.”
Everything about the label seems calibrated to insult Islam, from the pig in a traditional Muslim garment (Muslims abstain from pork) to the corruption of the phrase “Allahu Akbar” to the Muslim-equals-terrorist stereotype not-so-subtly implied by “Let your tastebuds explode.“
Oh, and the literal translation of Islam from Arabic to English is Submission. Oh, and Alpha announced the label as Muslims are observing Ramadan.
After outrage immediately flared on Twitter this morning, Alpha Brewing is backing away from the name Submission Ale, but isn’t necessarily scrapping the label, which deliberately mocks the Muslim faith.
The company’s head brewer, Derrick Langeneckert, says Submission Ale will get a new name because he didn’t realize 2nd Shift Brewing already makes a beer with the same moniker. That beer, Sub-Mission IPA, has nothing to do with Islam — it’s part of a collaboration with St. Louis’ much-beloved Mission Taco Joint.
Langeneckert says the criticism is silly. “This is the eighth beer in our Indoctrination Series,” he says. “No one was upset when we put the pope on a label.”
Alpha announced the series making fun of religion back in January, and put all 12 labels online at that point, Langeneckert says. There was no controversy. Nor was there any in previous months when everyone from atheists to “door knockers” to Scientologists came in for a ribbing (pun intended).
Langeneckert said the negative reaction on Twitter to the label surprised him: “The post was pretty innocuous.”
Incredibly offensive. This should not be tolerated. Period. https://t.co/NM5716FkyK
— Femme Ferment (@FemmeFerment) July 8, 2015
He pointed out that Submission is the eighth in a series of beers called Indoctrination. Previous labels have poked fun at Catholicism (Pope Mob-Ale), Mormonism (Elder Joe), Scientology (Xenu XIPA) and atheists (Atheist Ale). The Pope Mob-Ale label features a dinosaur using the popemobile as an ice-cream truck to lure children. Atheist Ale’s label shows a suit-and-bowtie-wearing chimpanzee.