Entertainment

“Alternatino With Arturo Castro” Gun Violence Skit Is Exactly What You Need To See Right Now

Since the debut of “Alternatino with Arturo Castro” on Comedy Central, we’ve been hooked. We don’t have to explain to you how the lack of Latinx in Hollywood has made TV and film watching quite dull. So, when we found out that Castro from “Broad City” was developing his own skit comedy show based on his “experiences as a Latino millennial in the United States,” we could not wait. 

Now that we’re a couple of months into the season we’re more in love with this show than we expected. Here’s briefly why: Castro touches on real-life struggles that we’re all currently experiencing but from our perspective. How revolutionary is that? Its sort of like “Seinfeld” meets “In Living Color” meets your whole Latino family. 

On Tuesday night’s episode, “Alternatino with Arturo Castro” included a skit that was all about mass shootings in our country. 

Comedy Central

Castro, who is a writer on the show as well, said the skit was shot last year. CNN reports that the parody, titled “Welcome to America,” was intended to air last week but then the mass shooting in Gilroy, California happened, so they delayed it. He felt it would be too soon to make light about the topic since people were still mourning the people who died in Gilroy. Then two back-to-back shootings happened in a matter of hours, and Castro said his skit had to be seen because these shootings continue to happen. 

“After a lot of soul-searching, I realized that it’s always going to be too soon as long as we keep allowing this to happen and don’t come together to make things change,” he said in a video posted to social media. “In no way am I trying to make light of it. And my voice is all I have, man. My art is all I have, and I have to use it to speak up for things that I care about.”

The sketch itself is about immigrant students who are taking a “cultural assimilation” class and learning about American customs. 

Comedy Central

The white teacher is telling the students that one thing they have to be prepared for is random shootings. Castro plays a student named Diego who’s from Central America. He can’t fathom why anyone in the U.S. would shoot anyone for no reason. He says in Central America people kill because they’re in drug cartels and are killing rival gang members. 

The teacher tells Diego, “Okay, in this country, it’s more like a single student shoots other students. Diego asks her, “If he is not in a cartel, then where is he getting his guns?” She responds by saying, “You can get guns anywhere. It’s America. I can get you a gun.”

When Castro’s character realizes that in the U.S. people are shooting others just to kill and that they can happen anywhere like schools, churches, concerts, he tells his teacher he’s going to go back to Central America. 

Comedy Central

Diego says to his teacher, “It’s super dangerous, but they have rules I can understand.” 

This sketch is hard-hitting on many levels. The rationale around mass shootings in the U.S. is terrifyingly hard to understand, which is why it makes no sense — especially for foreigners — that people are killing senselessly. 

While discussing the skit during an interview on CNN, Castro said that when they shot they filmed the skit, they had “hoped the topic of mass shootings was never going to be relevant again.” 

He also said that he isn’t trying to make the light of the situation, but he’s trying to show that mass shootings are difficult to understand. He went on to say that he understands gun violence first hand as he is an immigrant himself, but how can a nation of law be lawless when it comes to guns. 

People on social media definitely have a lot of feelings about this skit. 

Twitter

“I thought the sketch was great!” one person said on Castro’s Instagram. “Thank God. I’m from El Paso, this weekend has been the worst, and it’s continuing, but this was funny. Thank you, I’m so elated that you have a show.” Another said, “I admire your decision…it will always be too soon. It’s more important that we keep talking and bringing about change.”

Watch the entire skit below.

What are your thoughts about it?

Let us know in the comment section below. 

READ: This Actor Is Starting His Own Show On Comedy Central All About Being A Latino Millennial

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The Colombian City Where Body Parts Wash Up On The Shore So Often It’s Become Normal

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The Colombian City Where Body Parts Wash Up On The Shore So Often It’s Become Normal

Colombia has made incredible progress since the 1990’s when the country was a hotbed for international drug trafficking and guerrilla warfare. Today, modern bustling cities are home to shopping centers, museums, and hordes of international visitors.

However, despite the advancements, the country is still in a delicate peace deal with the main guerrilla oppossition – Las Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) – and there are many other paramilitary groups that still operate across the country, including in the main port city of Buenavista.

The city of Buenavista is seeing an uptick in body parts washing up along its shores.

In mid-January, an arm washed up on the city’s shore. It was quickly assumed, by local media reports, that the arm belonged to one of three local fisherman who had most likely been rounded up, killed, and dismembered. The arm had a tattoo on it, connecting it to one of the missing men, Armando Valencia.

And it wasn’t the first time this has happened. According to residents, body parts washing up on beaches is a tragically familiar occurrence. “There were some reports of body parts washing up at La Bocana [a nearby tourist spot]. A head, a leg, an arm,” said María Miyela Riascos, a social leader from Buenaventura, in a statement to VICE News. “Also, they found a man and a woman dismembered in the rural area of Bajo Calima.”

Violence has been rampant in Buenaventura for decades. The city has some of the highest rates of forced displacement and homicide in the country. But seldom has it been confronted by the levels of brutality experienced in the past year.

Criminal groups have long terrorized the city but things seem to be out of control.

So many different criminal groups have terrorized the slums of Colombia’s main Pacific port that residents rarely bother to learn the name of the latest clan in control. They simply call the warring gangs los malos or the bad guys.

Three people have been killed or disappeared daily, and conflict between organized crime has displaced as many as 6,000 people. Videos on Twitter show people fleeing their homes and young men and women patrolling with assault weapons. #SOSbuenaventura has been trending.

Community leaders see darker interests behind the violence, saying the areas where most crimes occur are the same where plans have been laid for a waterfront project, an airport and seaport terminals. “I see the violence as a means of pressure to get us off this area so they can build their projects,” Armando Valencia told The Guardian.

Criminals use “chop houses” to dismember their victims.

Colombian navy special forces on patrol among stilted waterfront shacks in Buenaventura
Credit: Fernando Vergara / Getty Images

The criminals recruit children, extort businesses, force people from their homes and dismember live victims, scattering their remains in the bay or surrounding jungle. Dozens of wooden huts balanced precariously on stilts over the bay have been abandoned by terrorized citizens and taken over by the gangs for use as casas de pique, or chop houses, where they torture and murder their victims.

The chop houses are the most gruesome consequence of a deeply flawed attempt to dismantle rightwing militias, which originally emerged to combat leftwing guerrillas in collusion with state security forces and drug traffickers.

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More Information Has Come Out About the Man Who Senselessly Shot a Young Woman While She Was Walking Her Dog

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More Information Has Come Out About the Man Who Senselessly Shot a Young Woman While She Was Walking Her Dog

Photo via bella_joy_gardens/Instagram

On June 10th, 2020, a senseless crime was committed. 21-year-old Isabella Thallas was shot and killed while she was out walking her dog with her boyfriend, 26-year-old Darian Simon. Simon, who was shot as well, survived.

Almost immediately after Thallas lost her life, the police were informed of the murderer: 36-year-old Michael Close, who lived in the same building as the couple.

Michael Close had shot the couple from his window with an AK-47. Thallas died almost instantly.

Close was quickly arrested and charged with first-degree murder, first-degree attempted murder, first-degree assault, and possession of a high-capacity magazine during a crime.

But questions piled up as to why Close committed this crime in the first place. Why did he target the couple? Was the murder pre-meditated? How did this unstable man get his hands on an AK-47?

As the police put the pieces together, the motive was shocking. According to Close, he shot and killed Thallas because her dog defecated in the alley behind his unit.

The story he gave police lined up with Darian Simon’s version of events as well. Simon says that he and Thallas were walking their dog together behind their building. Simon commanded the dog to “poop” when he heard Close yelling at him from the window above them.

“Are you going to train that f—ing dog or just yell at it?” Close allegedly yelled out the window at them. When Simon bent down to pick up the dog’s feces, that’s when Close open-fired out the window. Simon was able to run away with wounds to his lower body. Thallas lost her life.

According to Close’s girlfriend, the man had been mentally unwell for a long time.

He had been diagnosed with depression as well as a personality disorder but refused to seek help. He frequently abused drugs and alcohol after being sober for three years.

The murder of Thallas was a culmination of a tumultuous night where he had been drinking and arguing with his girlfriend for hours. Thallas just happened to be the person who was at the receiving-end of his outburst. She was at the wrong place at the wrong time.

And recently, some more disturbing information has come to light about Thallas’s murder.

According to Denver Police, the gun that Close used to murder Thallas was taken from his friend, police officer Sgt. Dan Politica.

The close friendship between a police officer and an unhinged murder is, understandably, drawing questions from the Denver community.

The Denver Police Department confirmed that Close and Politica were “close friends”. Thalla’s mother, Anna Thallas, appears to have even more information on the friendship.

“They’re best friends. Life-long best friends for over 20 years. They grew up together,” she told 9News Denver.

Anna Thallas is angry and frustrated that the Denver police aren’t conducting an internal investigation.

The DPD argues that Sgt. Politica did nothing wrong. Thallas points to his failure to report the rifle missing until after her daughter was missing as a massive red flag. It is also worth noting that Politica has a history of violence and disciplinary actions by the DPD.

According to phone records, Close texted Sgt. Politica before the murder complaining about a dog in his neighborhood. After he murdered Thallas, he left Politica a voicemail saying he “really f—-d up bad.”

“That man should be stripped of his uniform,” Anna Thallas said. “Had that officer acted in his capacity and the oath that he took to serve and protect and was a responsible gun owner, Isabella might still be alive. My daughter might still be here.”

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