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Interviewed by AL DÍA News, members of the comittee of San Mateo Carnavalero explained their decision. Photo: AL DÍA News.
Interviewed by AL DÍA News, members of the comittee of San Mateo Carnavalero explained their decision. Photo: AL DÍA News.

Why was the Puebla Carnival canceled in Philadelphia?

During this week, the Philatinos.com virtual radio station, originated in South Philly, announced the news: the Puebla Carnival - which the Mexican community…

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During this week, the Philatinos.com virtual radio station, originated in South Philly, announced the news: the Puebla Carnival - which the Mexican community of Philadelphia celebrates every Cinco de Mayo for the past 10 years - will not take place this year.

According to the organizers of the event, the decision is a measure that occurs in the midst of the thinning of the climate against immigrants in various regions of the country which, although living in Philadelphia (a sanctuary city), affects them as well.

"Under these sad circumstances, we do not think it is fair or an environment conducive to a celebration of joy ... we do not want to add a risk," the organization's press release read.

"Carnival is easy, but we want to take precautionary measures because 60 percent of our comrades come from other cities in the region and from other states. We do not want to expose them on their trip to Philadelphia, "said Édgar Ramírez, a member of the organizing committee.

According to Ramirez, 60 percent of the 400 carnavaleros (members of the parade representing the historic Battle of Puebla) live outside Philadelphia. Not to mention many musicians and other artists who even come from Mexico to perform in the streets of the city.

For his part, David Piña, one of the founders of the Puebla Carnival in the south of the city, said that the message between lines is also "to raise a voice of protest" before the new anti-immigrant narrative that is promoted from the White House.

It will be missed. San Mateo Carnavalero estimates that each year the Carnival of Puebla not only leaves them the moral satisfaction of keeping their collective memory alive but it is also a party that in a single day stimulates the economy in that sector of the city.

"(The celebration) provides the city - in taxes - and to the merchants of the sector between 85,000 and 120,000 dollars in profits". A significant figure produced by a community officially despised by the government of this country.

For now, members of San Mateo Carnavalero are calm and have expressed that this does not mean the end of their party, but a stop on the road to move forward and stronger in 2018. They call on their community and other immigrants to not allow themselves to be led by rumors and make decisions based on truthful information.

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