Civil rights group Muslim Advocates has pushed Marriott
International to bar anti-Islam organization Act for America from holding a
conference at its hotels, but Marriott indicated it won't do so.
Act for America is scheduled to hold its conference, ACTCON
2017, on Oct. 2 and 3 at the Crystal Gateway Marriott in Arlington, Virginia.
Saying there "should be no room for hate at Marriott hotels," Muslim
Advocates has pressured Marriott to force out Act for America. However,
Marriott indicated the event will be held as planned.
"We are a hospitality company that provides public
accommodations and function space," said a Marriott spokesperson. "Acceptance
of business does not indicate support or endorsement of any group or
Muslim Advocates calls Act for America a "hate group."
Act for America describes itself as an advocacy group that "stands for the
protection of the United States of America and the Western values upon which our
nation was built."
Act for America, which claims to have 750,000
members, touts its conference as "the nation's largest national
security-focused grassroots gathering." The conference theme is "United
Muslim Advocates said it previously sent a letter to
Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson urging him to cancel the Crystal Gateway Marriott's
commitment to host the convention. The group suggested Marriott was
hypocritical for doing business with an anti-Islam group while "trumpeting
its commitment to dignity for all people" in its "Golden Rule"
TV ad campaign.
Scott Simpson, Muslim Advocates' public advocacy director,
said, "Hosting the nation's largest anti-Muslim gathering ... is clearly
incompatible with the values of our nation, of Marriott's customers, and of
Marriott's own stated commitment to inclusion."