I am a little hurt after reading David Giuliani’s “Why denigrate Mexicans?” in the Optic on June 8. I can’t believe some people in Las Vegas would feel this way. It seems that whenever someone is losing an argument, they turn to slandering the race, looks or color.
When my ancestors came to this area, this was part of Spain. Later it was Mexico and now the United States. We are proud of our ancestry, and I can’t believe there are some in Las Vegas who would be upset at being associated with a community that is proud of that. It is obvious that the person complaining doesn’t feel as we do because they have lost the feeling of where they come from or feel that they are, in some way, better then us. I can tell you that this is hurtful.
The mayor has provided a means for all to address the problems merchants have with film companies, the film advisory board. It has a mixture of merchants and others who are for filming in Las Vegas. During the open meeting to discuss the moratorium, input was all for filming in Las Vegas and I was surprised that no one was there to represent those in opposition. Most said that filming has been a part of Las Vegas for almost 100 years and that it is part of our heritage and something to be proud of. A moratorium would send the wrong signal to film companies, and we need to attract employment to the area, not discourage it.
There were many merchants who say filming is good for their business. The opposition seems to come from just a few. I am a member of the advisory board and feel that those who are not happy are that way because they want to make more money from films. I would like to invite all to share their concerns with us. Show us how much money you lose. That should be easy to evaluate. Gross receipts divided by days open should be a reasonable compensation, unless you want to fatten your pockets.
There are many who live in Las Vegas and the surrounding area who work in the film industry. Caterers, teamsters, drivers, hair and makeup, extras and actors. All are also taxpayers. I have seen Las Vegas play as Texas, San Francisco, the old West, Minnesota, small town USA and Mexico. I am one of the local actors. I get most of my roles because I speak Spanish. When Las Vegas is Mexico, it gives me and those from here who speak Spanish an advantage. I also spoke Spanish in a local scratchier commercial and in a movie as a local Hispanic man and now as a Mexican. I have also played an American, a Native American and an Afghan villager. Film companies are in it to make money. They choose Las Vegas for our buildings and because of the people here. They can rely on that. Let’s keep it that way.
I always take any visitors from out of town to shop in Old Town. I, for one, would like to know who “she” is, so I can avoid her business. Why should her business be any more important than mine?
Jose J. Marquez