La Oferta

June 30, 2022

US entry ban for Mexican artists causing concern

La prohibición de entrar en Estados Unidos por cinco años impuesta a cuatro actores y cómicos mexicanos que llegaron sin visas de trabajo ha causado pesar y temor entre la comunidad de artistas originarios de México y especialmente entre los mariachis. EFE/IVAN MEJIA

Los Angeles, Mar 27 (EFE).- The five-year ban on US entry imposed on four Mexican actors and comedians who arrived in this country without work visas has sparked sorrow and fear among the community of artists from the US southern neighbor, especially among “mariachi” band members.

Cultural diversity is the face Los Angeles shows to the world, the city’s mayor, Eric Garcetti, told EFE, promising to continue fighting so that everyone feels welcome and secure there.

Garcetti spoke regarding what happened to actress Nora Velazquez, known for her “Chabelita” character, and comedians Carlos Bonavides, (“Huicho Dominguez”), Maribel Fernandez (“La Pelangocha”) and Yered Licona (“La Wanders Lover”).

Velazquez was returned to Mexico in early March from the Los Angeles airport, where Customs and Border Protection agents questioned her for arriving in the US to earn money without a work visa, and something similar happened to the other three, who came to participate in a party at a Houston restaurant.

The four cases aroused concern among Mexican artists and solidarity among local residents, but immigration authorities denied to EFE that there was any kind of ongoing persecution of artists and recommended that people come to the US with the appropriate visas.

El grupo femenino de Veracruz “Caña dulce, caña brava”, (izq. a dcha. Ana Arismendez, Violeta Romero, Adriana Cao Romero y Raquel Palacios) posan para EFE en un aparte del festival de San Gabriel (California). La prohibición de entrar en Estados Unidos por cinco años impuesta a cuatro actores y cómicos mexicanos que llegaron sin visas de trabajo ha causado pesar y temor entre la comunidad de artistas originarios de México y especialmente entre los mariachis. Cao, arpista el grupo, dijo a Efe que se sentían “con mucho temor, mucho miedo, así estuvimos los días antes de poder cruzar, con todo y que teníamos la invitación, sabíamos que nos veíamos en el cartel; pero decíamos a lo mejor no llegamos”. Añadió que “es una lástima que eso se esté rompiendo, que eso se esté quebrantando, porque debe de haber confianza entre los pueblos. Y la música y la cultura son una de las razones que nos pueden unir más”. EFE/IVAN MEJIA

Arturo Ramirez, the president of the OMULA California mariachi organization, told EFE that there is disappointment surrounding what happened to the artists, but he denied rumors about raids by immigration agents at Mariachi Plaza in Los Angeles, where mariachis gather to find performance gigs.

“Yes, it hurts us that they were not allowed to enter … because we’re comrades in the same art,” but the same thing “is happening with everyone,” said Ramirez, a member of the Mariachi Los Dorados de Villa band, apparently alluding to the tightening of immigration policy by the Donald Trump administration.

Mexican artists “have to come here to be able to show their talent and the culture” of their country, Vanesa Moreno, a singer with the Mariachi las Alteñas in San Antonio, told EFE.