A group of Coachella Valley students from Cesar Chavez Elementary had planned to put on a performance full of culture and history for people in attendance at the La Quinta Library in September – but were forced to remove all references to Mexico from its Mexican Independence Day performance due to one, yes just one, La Quinta resident, according to the Desert Sun.
Superintendent Edwin Gomez sent a letter to the city of La Quinta detailing the treatment experienced by the elementary pupils. In it, he said the city ordered that the Sept. 15 presentation be changed after a resident complained about showcasing Mexican culture. Maria Hassan, the teacher who organized the performance, was told to remove the Mexican flag as well as references to Hispanic culture from the students’ performance, Gomez wrote in a letter dated Oct. 11.
“I was informed that we could not proceed the way we had planned because they had received word from the city mayor that we couldn’t do anything with the Mexican flag or Mexican culture,” Hassan said in an interview. “I was very emotional, and I had so many students around me.”
The kids were made to perform without displaying the Mexican flag and gave no context to their costumes. According to the newspaper, the class was told that in the future, they would need to sing songs like “It’s a Small World” or “Yankee Doodle” over “Marcha Zacatecana” – and, a reminder here, this was all because of one, yes one, La Quinta resident because, well, I think the hashtag #DoYouEvenLaQuintaBro has never been more applicable?
The city is apparently taking their sweet time in investigating and working on some kind of statement about the incident and, who knows, maybe in the future, the city and the Mayor will show a little backbone and leadership and tell ignorant and obnoxious assholes to STFU and stick it in their Yankee Doodle Dandy.
Read more at the Desert Sun.
Update: The city has responded.