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Here's a story to make you love humanity: George and Joyce Gruss were traveling through Columbus, Ohio, during the weekend's snowstorm, stopped in at a fast food restaurant, and decided to help a homeless couple they met, paying for the couple to spend three nights at a Super 8 Motel so they wouldn't have to stay outside in 9-degree weather. Isn't that the spirit of generosity that makes America so exceptional?


And here's a story to make you despise humanity: An hour after they got back on the road, George Gruss got a call from the Super 8 Motel's security guard, who let him know that since the couple they'd helped had no ID, the motel had no choice but to kick them out into the storm, sorry about that, but them's the rules:

An hour or so after Gruss paid for the room and dropped the couple off–having been very clear about the fact that they were buying a room for this couple and not for themselves–he got a call from hotel security saying that the couple had been evicted for not having any identification. He was also told that his credit card would not be refunded for the three days he paid for.

Apparently a fan of Frank Capra movies, Gruss tried calling Super 8's corporate headquarters, but found to his surprise that Jimmy Stewart was unavailable to intervene. After arriving in Dayton, they posted their story to Facebook, social media started doing what social media does, and eventually somebody started an online petition, which is how informal justice apparently gets done these days, masked men with silver bullets also being in short supply. George Gruss said, "“We’re not trying to bash Super 8 ... We’re just frustrated with one hotel.”

Wyndham hotel Group, which owns Super 8, issued the typically anodyne press statement:

As a hotel franchisor, we consider guest safety and security to be of the upmost [sic] importance and as such, require each of the independently owned and operated hotels in our portfolio to comply with not only our own brand standards but also all local, state and federal laws. Please know that we take seriously the concerns that have been shared and are investigating at this time.

And eventually someone from Wyndham contacted the Grusses to let them know their money would be refunded, at least, so there's that. The Grusses tried looking for the homeless couple when they passed through Columbus on their return trip home, but didn't find them. They'll be donating their refund to a Columbus group that helps the homeless.

So there's your fable of American exceptionalism: Don't bother being a good Samaritan, because some asshole with a set of Company Rules will turn up to frustrate your act of kindness. But on the positive side, we bet there's no way that homeless couple with no photo ID is going to get away with election fraud.

[TheFrisky]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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