The return of 15-year-old Sebastien de la Cruz — aka El Charro de Oro — to national television on Wednesday brought with it another round of criticism from Twitter users apparently stunned to discover the existence of Mexican-Americans.
De la Cruz sang the national anthem prior to the debate between Democratic Party presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Some of the worst reactions can be seen below:
— GA_Trumpinator (@55Lidsville) March 10, 2016
.CNN this is the dumbest thing I've quite possibly ever saw. For a minute I forgot I was in #America until they sang the national anthem.
— Millennial 2016 (@millennial2016) March 10, 2016
Wouldn't it be fitting for the democratic debate if the national anthem of mexico had been sung instead of the national anthem of the US?
— Barbad (@agoode11) March 10, 2016
Wrong Univision to let a boy sing our national anthem with a charro outfit. I'm democratic and Hispano but that wasn't right
— RICARDO (@ricfeliu) March 10, 2016
— truthsayer (@veterans4truth) March 10, 2016
The Dem Debate hosted by Mexico, the National Anthem sung by little @marcorubio
Hillary promises she won't lie
Bernie offers free churros
— Loki Anthony (@DANKBEANS) March 10, 2016
Gawd – the guy who sung the national anthem looked like the Frito Bandito!!
— Bill Maier (@BillStl) March 10, 2016
CNN has topped a new low…mariachi singing the national anthem…for a US presidential debate…
— Jeff Watts (@jwatts803) March 10, 2016
As CNN reported at the time, de la Cruz was hit with similar invective in 2013, when he sang the anthem — in full Charro regalia — before the third game of the NBA Finals, with some describing the San Antonio native as an “illegal alien.”
“For those that said something bad about me, I understand it’s your opinion,” he said at the time. “I’m a proud American and live in a free country. It’s not hurting me. It’s just your opinion.”