A soft-spoken boy with a big voice isn’t about to let obnoxious online remarks bring him down — especially when he has so many positive ones in his virtual corner.
Fans of Sebastien De La Cruz have rallied on social media to support the young mariachi, whose rendition of the national anthem Tuesday at the Spurs game against the Miami Heat set off a flurry of racist tweets criticizing the 11-year-old.
“On the positive remarks, I just want to thank everybody for their support,” Sebastien said at a hastily organized news conference Wednesday. “With the racism remarks, to be honest, it’s just the people how they were raised. My father and my mother told me that you should never judge people by how they look. You should judge them on the inside. And the saying that I go by is never judge a book by its cover.”
On his Twitter account @selcharrodeoro, he said, “Please do not pay attention to the negative people. I am an American living the American dream. This is part of the American life.”
Mayor Julián Castro offered his own words of support on his Facebook page, telling Sebastien “don’t let a few negative voices get you down. You are a true talent and you represent the best of our nation’s future!”
Sebastien, who has appeared on NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” was a last minute replacement at Tuesday’s game, subbing for former Hootie & the Blowfish front man Darius Rucker.
Sebastien’s mom, Stacy De La Cruz, said her son knew of the harsh remarks and told her not to cry about them, but instead to save her tears for joy when he sings.
“I’d rather shed more happy tears than sad tears,” she said. “But I will say this: As a mom, a parent, I’m going to be overprotective. I’m going to look over my shoulder, over their shoulder. We have four children. I’m going to be looking over all of them. (But as for those negative) words, it’s always that saying, ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt.’”
More grace and guts in his little finger than all the racist idiot cowards out there put together. Hell of a singer, too:
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich, also a class act, has it exactly right:
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich offered words of encouragement for Sebastien De La Cruz, the young San Antonian who drew a flurry of racist comments on Twitter after singing the national anthem Tuesday at Game 3 of the NBA Finals.
“I would like to say I would be shocked or surprised by the comments,” Popovich said about an hour before tipoff of Thursday’s Game 4 at the AT&T Center. “But given the fact that there’s still a significant element of bigotry and racism in our nation, I’m not surprised.
“It still plagues us, obviously. And what I was surprised by was how proud these idiots were of their ignorance by printing their names next to their comments.
“(De La Cruz) is a class act. Way more mature than most his age. And as much as those comments by the idiots saddens you about your country, he makes you feel that the future could be very bright.”
Damn right it does. Good on the Spurs for bringing him back for Game 4.