Organizers of the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Monday fired back at Hyatt Hotels after the company released a statement criticizing the design of their stage.
Social media users over the weekend said the stage design at CPAC resembled an Odal rune, a symbol that was included in the divisional insignia of two Waffen SS divisions during World War II
“The othala rune (also known as the Othal Rune, Othila Rune, Odal Rune or Norse Rune) is part of the runic alphabet system, a system of writing used (with many variations) across pre-Roman Europe,” according to the ADL’s hate and neo-Nazi symbol database. “In the 20th century, Nazis in Germany adopted the othal rune, among many other similar symbols, as part of their attempt to reconstruct a mythic “Aryan” past. Nazi uses of the symbol included the divisional insignia of two Waffen SS divisions during World War II. Following World War II, white supremacists in Europe, North America, and elsewhere began using the othala rune. Today, it is commonly seen in tattoo form, on flags or banners, as part of group logos, and elsewhere.”
This is the CPAC stage design below. It is a rune which was used by the SS.
This is the stage from which @tedcruz screeched “freedom.”
— Ben Jackson (@BJacksonWrites) February 27, 2021
On Sunday, Hyatt issued a statement distancing the company from the conference.
“We take the concern raised about the prospect of symbols of hate being included in the stage design at CPAC 2021 very seriously as all such symbols are abhorrent and unequivocally counter to our values as a company,” Hyatt said.
In response, the American Conservative Union (ACU) — the organization that puts on CPAC — ripped the company’s criticism.
“Contrary to Hyatt’s own mission statement of inclusivity, your company just attacked its own customer by caving into the pressures of the politically motivated social media agitators who seek to destroy CPAC, our attendees and speakers from across the country, and the millions of Americans who support our work. Hyatt made a decision to issue additional statements late last night after the conference ended that disparaged and defamed us. These statements appear to validate demonstrably false and malicious claims,” ACU argued.
ACU argued criticisms of their state design are “irresponsible, untrue, and contribute to a climate of division and hatred.”
— CPAC 2021 (@CPAC) March 1, 2021