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Young mariachi handles racist tweets with maturity

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Updated: 6/22/2013 8:03 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV & MyNews3) -- If America wants to speak with one voice, maybe it would help to listen to the wisdom of an 11-year-old boy.

You might have seen him last week singing the national anthem at the NBA Finals. And this child, an American citizen, took a lot of heat for what he was wearing, and who he was. But Sebastien De La Cruz is standing proud.

He may be 11, but he talks like a grown up, and his reaction is very mature against the tide of negativity that spread across the web. The child mariachi singer was invited to sing the National Anthem at the LULAC Convention in Las Vegas.

"To be able to sing the National Anthem in front of millions of people, or billions because no one misses the NBA Finals, it's one thing that can happen in a lifetime to me. You don't get that offer every day," De La Cruz said.

Sebastien De La Cruz got that offer last week, and he proudly wore his mariachi suit which he calls his 'traje' in Spanish.

"When I put it on I feel, it takes the breath out of me. It's beautiful, my 'trajes'. I think they are very beautiful, the colors how they collide," he said.

However some NBA fans were not a fan of what they saw and they had no qualms of putting their opinions on Twitter.

Some of the more mild tweets said: "What's up with this little Mexican kid singin' the national anthem at the heat game?”

Another tweet read: "9 out of 10 chance that kid singing national anthem is 'illegal'"

"To all the people who have been called names who have been called a 'Wetback', who have been called an 'Alien', who has been told they have 'Crossed the border', just don't listen to them," De La Cruz said, "I just want to tell all the kids of any size, any age, any ethnicity...don't listen to what people say about you. You know who you are."

Sebastien says he knew what he wanted to do when he first stumbled upon mariachis in San Antonio where he's from, at 4-years-old. He says it changed his world.

"It was just a way to show my feelings and what i have inside," De La Cruz said.

And he ended up being discovered nationally on 'America's Got Talent' last year, where he proudly wore his 'traje'.

"And I know it feels kind of funny but I actually feel like I have different abilities when I put it on, it's what makes me proud, in other words. It makes me feel like Latinos aren't at the bottom, that we are actually more further on top," he said.

Sebastien stressed one thing he's been thinking about and that's this: "We all bleed red."

His favorite Spanish language singer is Vicente Fernandez and he hopes someday to open up for him.

He's been invited to sing again for the NBA Summer league.




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