On Sunday night, the Hyatt Hotels Corporation released a statement expressing concern over reports that the Conservative Political Active Conferences (CPAC) stage was shaped like a rune used by the Nazis.

The statement also condemned CPAC guests who disrespected Hyatt staff members for attempting to enforce social distancing measures.

A photo of the CPAC stage went viral on Twitter over the weekend after someone compared its shape to a Nordic othala rune, which the Nazis appropriated to “reconstruct a mythic ‘Aryan’ past.” As a result, many social media users went to Hyatt’s official Twitter, asking the company to cancel the rest of the CPAC or to address the controversy.

Matt Schlapp, the American Conservative Union chair, called the accusations that the stage was intentionally modeled after a hate symbol “outrageous and slanderous.”

After former President Donald Trump had finished delivering the CPAC keynote address, Hyatt released a corporate statement that defended the hotel’s decision to host the conference.

The statement reads:

“We do not always agree with or share the same values as groups hosting meetings and events at our hotels. When we learned that CPAC 2021 stage design had been compared to a symbol of hate, we promptly raised this concern with the meeting organizers, who strongly denied any connection to such symbols. Had we initially recognized the potential connections to the hate symbolism, we would have proactively addressed it prior to commencement of the event.”

The statement continued to explain that the stage design was left as-is because the conference was already underway. The company was concerned about the colleagues’ and guests’ safety in “what could have been a disruptive situation.”

Wearing masks was another area of conflict that arose during the conference. It was reported that some CPAC attendees had mistreated the Hyatt employees who tried to get them to wear masks and follow the hotel’s safety measures.

“We were extremely disappointed by the disrespect many individuals involved in the event showed to our colleagues, as it is reflective neither of our own commitment to care for members of the Hyatt family nor of how we wish to conduct business,” the statement said. “We are tremendously grateful to our colleagues for their resilience and the care they demonstrated keeping people safe in circumstances that became increasingly difficult as the event evolved.”

The statement, however, did not sit well with some potential customers, some threatening to boycott the chain, which led Hyatt Hotels to trend on Twitter over the weekend and on Monday morning.

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