Los Angeles City Councilmember Kevin de León is facing opposition on a proposal to rename a portion of Bailey Street after late musician Vicente Fernández. The famed singer died late last year and the councilmember is proposing the name change to the section of street in his honor, but fellow council members are pushing back.
The famed mariachi singer died on Dec. 12, 2021 after being hospitalized following a fall on his ranch in Mexico. Shortly after being hospitalized, Chente was diagnosed with Guillain-Barré syndrome, which is a rapid muscle weakening caused by the immune system damaging the peripheral nervous system.
L.A. Taco first reported on the rejection of the measure with members of the Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council (BHNC) calling out Chente’s previous actions and comments. Specifically, the council took issue with honoring a man who has a history of alleged sexual assaults and wildly homophobic comments.
A letter from the council laid out four reasons why the measure was rejected. The first reason is comments Chente made about not wanting a gay person’s liver transplanted into him after doctor’s found a cancerous lump. The second reason is his own admission to infidelity in an interview in 2019. The third reason is the allegations made that he inappropriately touched women (and called it an accident).
“Additionally, the Boyle Heights Neighborhood Council requests that any memorialization or naming of streets or public squares be for non-living, historic figures who have had tangible and direct ties to the community of Boyle Heights,” the letter continues to say. “There are many uncelebrated local heroes that deserve this honor.”
And right now, that person isn’t Vicente Fernández.