Hate group brags about deal they got from hotel - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Anna Marie Hartman

Hate group brags about deal they got from hotel

OLIVE BRANCH, MS (WMC-TV) - A hate group recently received a huge discount at one Mid-South hotel. Thursday, Action News Five uncovered members of a white supremacist group bragging about the deal they made.

The controversial group is led by former Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan David Duke.

This week, the Mid-South Peace and Justice Center has called for the cancellation of Duke's conference. They said the event is bad for the community, for hotel employees, and race relations from Memphis to Mississippi.  

On his official website, Duke calls presidential candidate Barack Obama an enormous danger to America and the world. 

Just days after America elects a president, Duke will be at the Whispering Woods Hotel and Convention Center in Olive Branch. The European-American Unity and Rights Conference, better known as the Euro Group, will hold a conference November 7th through the 9th.  

"They're white supremacists. They believe that the white race is the master race. They believe that the white race is superior to all others," Jacob Flowers of the Mid-South Peace and Justice Center said. 

Flowers is outraged that the Olive Branch hotel would host such a group. 

According to Duke's website, the hotel also offered them a 40 percent discount. 

"We think that Whispering Woods should either cancel the contract or at least say that you know we were tricked and we stand in defiance to what this group represents," Flowers said.

A hotel spokesperson said management was not aware of the nature of the Euro Group before a conference contract was signed. 

Dr. Eric Brey from the U of M's Hospitality Management School said even if a group fails to disclose their full identity, it is tough to break a signed contract.

"There would have to be some sort of compensation for that opting out," Brey said.   

But Mid-South Peace and Justice said the negative publicity Duke might bring could be more costly to the Whispering Woods hotel in the long run.

The hotel general manager has resigned amid the controversy. 

Mid-South Peace and Justice is asking the hotel to refuse his resignation so he can keep his job. 

Duke's conference is scheduled the same weekend as the COGIC conference in Memphis.

COGIC did not wish comment.


Click here to e-mail Anna Marie Hartman.

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