Five responses by Latin American musicians to the US elections

Mexican rock-rap band Molotov posted a photoshopped image showing Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto building a wall.
November 18, 2016

As an openly racist president was elected in the US, artist-activists reacted to Donald Trump across Latin America and the Caribbean. Below is a selection, abridged from TeleSUR English.

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1. Mexico's old-school rock-rap band Molotov did not miss the opportunity to take a jab at both US president-elect Donald Trump and current Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto.

The band, awarded a Grammy for their album From Russia With Love in 2012, posted a photoshopped image showing Pena Nieto building a wall.

Pena Nieto was heavily criticised when he decided to personally meet Trump before the presidential elections. It came after Trump promised to build a wall at the Mexican border in a bid to stop Mexican migrants travelling into the US, at the financial expense of the Mexican government, after calling Mexican immigrants “drug traffickers” and “rapists”.

2. Mexican artist and Grammy Award winner Lila Downs from the largely indigenous state of Oaxaca posted the video “The Demagogue”, released on October 21.

The song portrays a “white devil who believes he is the king of the world, buying and selling hatred”, who “does not respect women, races, life, the whole humanity”.

3. Cypress Hill, the first Latino hip hop crew to get both a golden and platinum record, did not denounce the victory of Trump but instead celebrated the news that marijuana was legalised for recreational use in four US states.

The Los Angeles-based band has long been known for campaigning in favour of the legalisation of cannabis, usually smoking a giant joint on stage.

4. From Puerto Rico, Calle 13’s main singer Rene Perez Joglar, known as Resident, commented that “the good news about Trump's victory is that it will go so badly that even the supporters of Puerto Rican statehood will want independence”.  

Resident started actively supporting Puerto Rico's independence in 2011, after the Associated Free State was not allowed to be part of the regional organisation Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean.

5. “Argentina's most notable rapper of the millennium” according to Pagina 12, Sara Hebe, re-posted a tweet by TeleSUR correspondent Hibai Arbide Aza saying that “Bernie was the best in everything. EVERY THING.”

Hebe has a long past in feminist and social activism in Buenos Aires, where she has fought President Mauricio Macri's neoliberal policies, which include budget cuts in cultural programs and violent evictions of people from their homes.

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