George López: ‘The problems of African-Americans are those of Latinos’

Comedian George López, a strong advocate for immigrants and the Latino community, premieres on Netflix “We’ll Do It For Half”, a “stand-up” special that reflects several of the problems that the US is experiencing such as immigration, racism or police brutality.

“I have been a comedian for many years and I have always seen that the problems of the African-American community are the problems of Latinos,” López replied in a video call with Efe.

In his new television show, the first one he has starred in since 2017, López jokes and denounces at the same time several of the prejudices associated with immigration, the working classes and social differences in the United States.

The title “We’ll Do It For Half” also refers to a controversy over a joke about Donald Trump that led him to be investigated by the Secret Service earlier this year.

Comedian George Lopez.

Comedian George Lopez.

(Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times)

With that message – we will do it in half – the humorist responded to an arrest warrant and deadly threat against the American president that an Iranian legislator published on the internet for $ 3 million.

A word that, he says, was ironic, and he remembered that many Latinos work, precisely, for half the money.

“There are many immigrants who work hard and last year they wanted to kick them out, now that this pandemic is over, it works magic and suddenly they are essential workers,” he said. “They are the same people.”

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The comedian gave a new meaning to that expression, which has become a motto and complaint.

“Many Latinos are those people who get up early and work hard for little money,” he said.

“Those who are cleaning hospitals, collecting food … are the most important now. Without them no one eats, we have to have more respect for the people, ”he asked.

Born in Los Angeles to a family of Mexican immigrants, López has been one of the most celebrated comedians of the Latino community in the United States for decades; He was named one of the “25 Most Influential Hispanics” in the country by Time magazine in 2005.

But in recent years, his humor, sometimes controversial and acid, has led him to star in controversial sounds and disagreements on the Internet.

“In these years of social networks some people are always going to be angry,” he confirmed.

“You get messages on Instagram, for example, that are horrible. But from users without a name, it is anonymous, if those who say ‘go back to Mexico’ had to put a name, address or telephone, they would surely stop, ”he analyzed.

Among other anecdotes, López recalled the threats he received due to a joke that now sounds more current than ever.

“I was once talking about the danger of the streets,” he said, “and I said that if they want to take care of them, why didn’t they take the police and many got angry, like Fox News, who make you the center of their attacks.”

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Now, those comments and many of the jokes that occupy his new Netflix monologue, recorded in December, are again relevant today in the heat of the wave of protests that runs through the United States, the most important in decades.