[Official Announcement on Don Malik's denial of entry to U.S.]
Hi, this is DAZE ALIVE.
I have news that may make you feel uncomfortable and/or bothered by it’s details.
As some of you may know, Don Malik was invited to showcase his music for an international audience at SXSW in Austin, Texas. Unfortunately, Don Malik was denied entry to the U.S. after hours of unfair treatment and was forced to give up his stage taking place at the Karma Lounge on March 17.
Last Sunday, March 12th, Don Malik and eight other staff members and fellow artists from artist management agency StoneShip boarded a flight at Incheon International Airport (ICN) and headed for their first point of entry into the U.S. First stop, San Francisco International Airport (SFO) but during a routine screening by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Don Malik was detained and denied entry into the U.S. and was sent back to South Korea.
Don Malik and the rest of the crew had in their possession approved ESTA Visas, Contracts and Visa Waiver Forms, both provided by SXSW, stating that their showcase is not an engagement in commercial activities within the U.S. Nonetheless, they were detained for 24 hours after they were refused entry, and had to go through racist speech and ridicule of local SFO CBP staff, such as pulling both ears on both sides (imitating monkeys) or calling them “chinks.” In addition, all the members of the party were confiscated from the possibility of helping local officials, and one of their fellow artists was handcuffed for no reason and was never recited the ‘Miranda Rights’ which the U.S. Constitution states that the rights apply to all persons within the United States. Due to this refusal, the ESTA approval they received is permanently erased.
According to foreign magazines such as Pitchfork and Spin, at least seven teams have been denied entry for the same reason, some of whom have already entered the U.S. and attended SXSW in previous years with the same visa and paperwork.
We express deep regrets about the racial discrimination and unfair treatment experienced by the artists who have been denied entry and wish you a better chance to meet local fans who were anxiously waiting for Don Malik’s showcase.
- DAZE ALIVE CHIEF JERRY.K, March 15, 2017