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Building facade at Rapid City

Source: Feifei Cui-Paoluzzo / Getty

So, some white hotel owner in South Dakota really thought that, in 2022, she might get away with posting to social media her intent to blatantly racially discriminate at her business.

Connie Uhre, the owner of the Grand Gateway Hotel in Rapid City, S.D., must have thought he lived in Racist City, S.D. because, according to TV station KNBN, she posted then deleted a post on Facebook Sunday that declared her hotel would “no longer allow any Native American on property.”

Now, obviously, a business owner discriminating against citizens on the basis of race is illegal AF, but the First Amendment does allow Uhre to post it as long as there’s no actual racist policy in place. But it’s still a dumb a** idea.

Basically, what happened is there was a shooting at the hotel early Saturday morning where a male in his late teens was critically wounded and rushed to the hospital. The alleged shooter is 19-year-old Quincy Bear Robe, who was arrested and charged with Aggravated Assault and Commission of a Felony with a Firearm.

But all Uhre needed to know was that a Native American man was involved, and that was enough for her to decide that all Native Americans were responsible and should be excluded from her hotel for it.

First of all, KKKonnie was already loud, racist and wrong in posting that she would be engaging in discriminatory practices “do (*due)to the killing that took place at the Grand Gateway Hotel.” According to Raw Story, a spokesperson for the Rapid City Police Department confirmed that the victim is still alive. Imagine being so anxious to display your intent to go full Native American Jim Crow that you don’t even get basic facts of the shooting straight. She knew enough to know a non-white was involved, but she didn’t know the victim is not dead.

Uhre also reportedly posted that she can “not allow a Native American to enter our business including Cheers,” because she can’t tell “who is a bad Native or a good Native.” (Cheers is a sports lounge and casino on the hotel property. It’s not, well…I think we can all agree that Carla and Sam would never.)

Anyway, imagine being so racist that the mayor of your city catches wind and is like, “Hol’ up, KKKaren, we not doing this” while screenshotting your deleted post for the world to see and shame.

“In addition to blaming the mayor, police chief, sheriff, candidate for sheriff and the court system, a local hotel bans all Native Americans for a shooting a few days ago on hotel property,” Rapid City Mayor Steve Allender captioned his tweet. “Neither the shooting or Grand Gateway’s response to it reflect our community values.”

Allender also told the Rapid City Journal he “just felt that I couldn’t be silent and pretend like this is just a harmless venting out of frustration.”

“This is an attack on not only the 12% of Rapid City citizens who are Native American but also the larger Native American population nationwide,” he continued. “So I sent the Tweet, on the road traveling today, as a bare minimum symbol of support to the Native American community.”

On top of all that, according to the Washington Post, a class action lawsuit has been filed against the hotel and, on Wednesday, hundreds of demonstrators gathered outside a federal courthouse in the city to cheer on the lawsuit before marching through the city in protest of the Grand Gateway Hotel and its owner.

All of this because one white woman couldn’t keep her racism to herself.

For the record, KNBN reported that Uhre’s son, Nick, who manages the hotel, says there’s no policy disallowing Native Americans to stay at Grand Gateway, but he said he fears for the safety of his family, staff, and guests.

Yeah, sorry but white fear is no grand gateway to justifying racism.

 

 

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