Comic Mencia meets protesters

Eddie Roman, senior in LAS, protests the Carlos Mencia standup comedy show outside of Assembly Hall, Sunday evening. Roman tells attendants as they are walking in, Learn about your own culture before you laugh at it. Protesters were later invited by M Adam Babcock The Daily Illini

Eddie Roman, senior in LAS, protests the Carlos Mencia standup comedy show outside of Assembly Hall, Sunday evening. Roman tells attendants as they are walking in, “Learn about your own culture before you laugh at it.” Protesters were later invited by M Adam Babcock The Daily Illini

By Julian Scharman

Carlos Mencia paid a visit to Assembly Hall last night as the fourth installment of his nationwide “Punisher Tour”.

However, while anxious ticket-holders made their way into Assembly Hall, they were met by six members of the Latino and Latina community and members of the Central And South American Students Association. Statements made by the protesters included: “We’re just raising awareness,” “Learn our culture before you laugh at it,” “Where are Mencia’s Mexican fans?”, “Who does Carlos Mencia cater to?”, and “We’re not laughing with you.”

The message of the chanting protesters was not one of hatred toward Mencia, but more about raising awareness of the country’s situation, said Mohammad Rasool, junior in LAS, and president of CSASA,

“Carlos Mencia makes a mockery of different cultures, and takes his entire sense of humor and makes it ridicule instead of humor . so he is using the social situation of America against the people that he is making jokes about,” Rasool said.

Protesters did not feel that Mencia’s Latin background gives him the right to speak out about stereotypes and degrade the Latino and Latina culture as a whole, said Marcos Avila, sophomore in Engineering, and member of CSASA. It was no more than thirty minutes after the protesters had taken their positions outside of Assembly Hall when Mencia himself, accompanied by security and University Police, addressed the group.

“Go in there, go in there, and watch the show, and at the end of it we’ll have this conversation,” said Mencia to the group after offering them free tickets to his show. “And then you’re gonna say, ‘I didn’t know.'”

After agreeing to Mencia’s proposal, the group made its way into Assembly Hall.

“I’ve seen more than a majority of his television shows, and I don’t know if this is going to be any different or if he is going to put his performance into a positive light for the community,” Rasool said.

After the show, Rasool said that his opinions were the same.

“None of our ideas really even changed at all, and in fact, it really just solidified them,” Rasool said, “because it was exactly the same as his previous stand up and his television show.”

Rasool and the other protesters, though, had to leave the performance early.

“We are going to e-mail him a list of our questions and concerns,” he said.