Minimal proactivity in the Culture Commission in San Lázaro

Last week, the Culture and Cinematography Commission of the Chamber of Deputies presented its first semi-annual report of the first year of activities in the LXV legislature, that is, the one corresponding to the months of October 2021 and February 2022.

Broadly speaking, this document reports that said commission generated 16 initiatives and received eight minutes, that is, those initiatives coming from the Chamber of Senators. Of all the above, six matters were ruled, according to the report, two of which were discarded and the remaining four were approved during the second and third ordinary meetings of the commission, held in February.

It is noteworthy that during the fourth meeting, held at the end of last March, the deputy María Eugenia Hernández, from Morena, pointed out “low productivity” during the first months of work of the commission, especially on the presentation of initiatives and, for therefore, in the approval of opinions to take to the plenary session in San Lázaro.

In that same session, the deputy Rafael Hernández Villalpando, also from Moreno, expressed his disagreement with his colleague and opined: “it is not about presenting and presenting initiatives, it is about looking for the transcendent (…) it is the most important thing, more than the number, the quality of what we are presenting”.

By the way, according to the six-monthly report and the database of the microsite of the Committee on Culture and Cinematography, during the current legislature, at least until March, Deputy Hernández Villalpando, who is also secretary of the committee, has not presented initiatives or points of agreement on issues related to cultural and cinematographic activities, while deputy María Eugenia Hernández Pérez has presented two initiatives, one focused on guaranteeing the cultural rights of older adults and another on combating “stereotypes”. cultural gender”, although none have been ruled.

Is the quality dictated?

As mentioned above, there were four issues ruled by the Culture and Cinematography Commission in San Lázaro, that is, they could finally go to the plenary session of the Chamber of Deputies for discussion and approval. However, the four are issues that the current legislature rescued from the pending ones of the previous one, as this newspaper reported on December 16.

The foregoing indicates that, at least in the first semester of work of the LXV legislature, the Culture and Cinematography Commission did not rule or take to the plenary a single initiative coming from its current members.

Of these four opinions, one is on various provisions of the Law for the Promotion of Reading and Books and another for the reform of the Organic Law of the Seminar on Mexican Culture, this one in particular, to guarantee the inclusion of non-Mexican members born in the country and to force gender parity among its members. The two remaining opinions refer to the General Law on Culture and Cultural Rights.

However, none of the above presents proposals for comprehensive public policies or reforms to laws in favor of the bulk of the artistic or cultural population. That is to say, they are not legislations that result in broad benefits for guilds such as cinematography, performing arts, books or independent artists, who throughout the pandemic expressed different urgencies before the legislature to alleviate the impact of the crisis in each of its fields.

Despite the foregoing, the six-monthly report presented by the Culture and Cinematography Commission, in the sub-topic “Progress in the fulfillment of the annual work program”, reports: “the consultations with specialists, academics, organizations of the cultural community , creators and officials of the Ministry of Culture and its dependencies, as well as of the Sectors of the Federal Public Administration”.

However, to give an example, last March this newspaper interviewed the president of the Mexican Culture Seminar, Felipe Leal, on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of this organization. There, Leal said he was surprised at the modifications in process in the legislature on the Organic Law of the same: “we received it with bewilderment because they never consulted us. How is it that representatives of society, such as legislators, do not consult the body in question?

a good one is coming

It is true that during the month of March greater activity was noted in the initiatives presented within the commission, which are still pending. Of these, one presented by the PAN deputy Wendy González Urrutia stands out for the issuance of the Law of Regulation for Social, Cultural and Sports Security, an issue that this newspaper has followed up on and that seeks an order for the regulation of a mechanism that allows artists, creators and cultural managers, as well as athletes, to access registration in the social security scheme. Due to its breadth, the initiative is now being turned over to the Culture and Sports commissions, with the opinion of the Social Security and Budget and Public Accounts commissions.

Another initiative at the door and a warrant:

Modifications in the Law of Prizes, Incentives and Civil Rewards, in particular to make changes in the statutes of the National Prize for Arts and Literature to include in the award those people who contribute to the enrichment of popular arts.

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