Hyatt Hotel to let Islamophobic group host annual conference in Virginia
Act for America, largest anti-Muslim group, will be allowed to celebrate their anniversary there.
Later this year, the Hyatt Regency Crystal City Hotel in Arlington, Virginia, has agreed to host the Act for America 10th Annual Anniversary conference.
The conference scheduled between September 4-5, will see a gathering of America’s largest anti-Muslim group, according to The Southern Poverty Law Center and The Anti-Defamation League. Members are said to focus on so-called national security issues and Judeo-Christian values that they believe are under attack. The group was launched after the 9/11 attacks.
Act for America claims it is the “NRA of national security” and the “nation’s largest nonprofit, non-partisan, grassroots national security organization.” They say that their goal is to “protect and preserve American culture and to keep this nation safe.” In reality, the group denigrates American Muslims and regularly purports racist views.
Derrick Morrow, area vice president and general manager at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City, told the Huffington Post that he felt obligated to let the group host their event at the hotel.
“The hotel does not unlawfully discriminate against groups who wish to hold lawful meetings at the hotel,” Morrow explained. “The views and opinions expressed by hotel guests or groups do not necessarily reflect those of the hotel, its owners or colleagues.”
“There must be no room for hate”
Not everyone agrees.
“There must be no room for hate at Hyatt hotels,” Scott Simpson, public advocacy director at the legal advocacy group Muslim Advocates, told the Huffington Post.
The Hyatt’s mission statement ironically states: ‘We embrace all cultures, races, ethnicities, genders, sexual orientations, ages, abilities, perspectives, and ways of thinking.”
Opponents point out that the hotel chain’s decision to host ACT for America is antithetical to the bedrock of the company’s values. Even so, the Hyatt Regency Crystal City is preparing its employees for the potential backlash that the conference may cause.
“We urge all Hyatt employees and potential guests to be aware that their hotel will be a hostile environment during this convention,” said the hotel through a statement.
Hyatt Hotels Corporation has not commented on the booking.