The owner of a Swiss hotel, Ruth Thomann, says she’s not at all anti-Semitic even though her rooms included signs telling Jewish people (and only Jewish people) to take a shower before swimming and that the freezer was available to them only during certain hours.
Guests spotted the placards at the Paradies hotel in the Swiss resort village of Arosa. The news of the signs spread quickly after an outraged guest posted a picture to Facebook.
Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely called the incident “an anti-Semitic act of the worst and ugliest kind” and demanded the person who posted the signs “be brought to justice.”
One Israeli guest didn’t understand how Thomann could hold those views when she was so kind to his family personally… but Thomann claims her signs were put up to help all guests:
Thomann told the Swiss newspaper Blick she was trying to address the issue of guests not showering before they used the pool during a period where many Jewish guests were staying at the hotel.
“I made the sign without sensitivity and now I am paying for it dearly,” she told Blick.
Ignorance is hardly an excuse for outright bigotry.
And what about the freezer, which was made available to Jewish guests for only two hours in the day?
Thomann said she posted the sign to limit guests’ use of the freezer and to allow staff more privacy, according to Blick.
That would be a little more believable if it applied to everybody… but no. The restrictions were limited to Jewish guests.
After the recent outcry, Thomann removed all the offensive signs. That may be too little too late to save her business given how her reputation is now forever ruined. It’s hard to sympathize with her for what she claims were good intentions. It’s also hard to imagine what she could do to prove she’s not an anti-Semite. Oh well. Her problem. She should’ve known better — or at least the people around her should have said something before this ever escalated.
(Thanks to Richard for the link)