“Our hearts go out to the victims, and to all communities targeted by hatred and gun violence,” begins the latest sketch on Comedy Central’s “Alternatino with Arturo Castro.” The timely segment, set in a classroom where recent immigrants are learning about “cultural assimilation,” tackles the issue of gun violence, and while it was filmed over a year ago, the team felt that it was necessary to release it this week following the shooting at El Paso, Texas.
The episode begins with a message on a black screen that explains that the episode was released now given the “senseless violence of the past weekend,” followed by a call to take action to #DisarmHate.
In the segment, a teacher begins to explain the issue of gun violence in America before a student from Central America, Diego (played by Arturo Castro), interjects that he is happy that cartel violence is not an issue in the U.S.
“Okay, though that may be true Diego, we do have gun violence in this country for example mass shootings in schools,” the teacher says. She then struggles to explain what causes these mass shootings, where the perpetrators are often described as “lone shooters” or “shy” kids with mental health issues. Diego has a hard time understanding this.
Yesterday, Arturo Castro published a piece on The Washington Post where he writes, “This is a very personal sketch for me because, as someone who grew up in Guatemala, I’m no stranger to gun violence, and I condemn it in any way, shape or form as I’ve seen the tragic effects it can have on a society firsthand. Yet this particular brand of gun violence — fueled by racism and xenophobia — is very hard to understand and impossible to accept.”
Watch the sketch here:
“Alternatino With Arturo Castro” airs Tuesday nights on Comedy Central, 10:30pmET.