Meek Mill might be right, Las Vegas hotels have an age-old history of racial profiling

Francis Akhalbey May 27, 2019 at 08:58am

May 27, 2019 at 08:58 am | Opinions & Features

Francis Akhalbey

Francis Akhalbey | Staff Writer

May 27, 2019 at 08:58 am | Opinions & Features

Photo via @meekmill on Instagram

Meek Mill over the weekend accused the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas of racial profiling after staff denied him entry into the hotel and further threatened to have that police called on him for trespassing if he did not leave.

In a series of Tweets, the Philadelphia rapper detailed his confrontation with the hotel security. TMZ reports that he went to the hotel to attend a concert hosted by DJ Mustard on Saturday.

“If you come from our culture you should never step foot in the cosmopolitan hotel they just really racist as hell …. something really has to be done in Las Vegas what they doing to black people!” he shared.

“They telling black rappers they are banned from properties they own without incident … they just told me I was trespassing and I will be arrested I stepped in that hotel once at a jay z party without incident!” he added.

The Championships rapper also shared a video of him asking the hotel security why he was being denied entry into the building to which he was told it’s a private property and they had the right to refuse to do business with him due the information they had at that time.

“What information?” he asked. “By not refusing to do business with me, you’re telling me I’ll be arrested if I don’t leave. If I walk upstairs and [sic] get something to eat imma be arrested for what? For being a rapper?”

The security man addressing him was, however, adamant insisting he cannot be allowed into the building.

Meek Mill’s tweets and video went viral, with one twitter user corroborating his accusation.

This is also not the first time Las Vegas hotels have been in the news for racial profiling as this dates back to the 1930s where hotels along the strip were racially segregated.

According to Intermountain Histories, though hotels and casinos had black employees, they only worked from the back end and were barred from attending to customers in preference to strictly white dealers and servers.

Though famous black entertainers including Sammy Davis Jr., Nat King Cole, and Ella Fitzgerald frequently performed at these hotels, they alongside other black performers were not allowed to use the front door. They also could not lodge in these hotels and as such, could only stay in boarding houses in West Las Vegas where blacks were restricted.

Racial segregation along the strips in the city and protests by blacks to allow them patronize their services compelled the opening of the Moulin Rouge, a non-segregated hotel in 1955.

The Moulin Rouge — Photo Credit: UNLV Libraries Special Collections

By the 1960s after black Las Vegas residents threatened to demonstrate against the strip’s segregation policies, authorities and casino heads agreed to end racial discrimination in their establishments, Intermountain Histories further wrote.

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