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Los Lobos in Tucson

Drew Reynolds
Strikebreakers, rockers, or both?

Los Lobos was never officially part of the Sound Strike, the musicians’ boycott of Arizona over Senate Bill 1070, Sand Land’s notorious breathing-while-brown law. But when the old-school Chicano rock band announced the cancellation of a gig at Scottsdale’s Talking Stick Resort in June of 2010, they earned plaudits from many in the anti-SB 1070 camp for the action.

This is what the act posted to its Web site at the time:

“We support the boycott of Arizona. The new law will inevitably lead to unfair racial profiling and possible abuse of people who just happen to look Latino. As a result, in good conscience, we could not see ourselves performing in Arizona. We regret the inconvenience this may have caused the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community, Casino Arizona, Talking Stick Resort and our fans, but we feel strongly that it is the right thing to do.”

What a difference a year makes.Though the Sound Strike continues despite the complaints of some Arizona promoters and music critics, Los Lobos is performing at Tucson’s Rialto Theatre this evening, and just played Talking Stick on Cinco de Mayo.

The pro-immigrant human rights organization Coalicion de Derechos Humanos has issued a statement in response, explaining why it will not take up an offer to have a table in the lobby at the Friday night event.

It reads, in part:

“Derechos Humanos was recently invited to join other groups to table in the lobby at the Los Lobos show at the Rialto Theater on May 6th in Tucson.  Our commitment to support the economic strategies being used to demand an end to hate laws like SB1070, HB2281, and recent proposed legislation that attack our communities made this participation impossible. We considered it to be the crossing of the picket line that the boycott represents. Shows like these create an alternative niche for performing acts to court favor with our local grassroots organizations but at the same time diffuse the effect that boycotts and event cancellations have on pushing the issue to end the right-wing attack. It is clear that the boycott continues to have power. The omnibus SB1611 bill was clearly defeated due to the influence of 60 CEOs who were motivated by the economic damage the hate legislation has done to the state. Those same laws are still being re-introduced and we still are in an ongoing vigorous struggle against hate in our communities.

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About eldesterrado1947

Voyaging the lateral connections between cultures and continents.

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