Multi-American | How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

The art of the DREAM Act movement

Libertad, the heroine of Julio Salgado's
Libertad, the heroine of Julio Salgado's "Liberty for All" comic strip
Art courtesy of Julio Salgado

ColorLines has posted a collection of art inspired by the DREAM Act, the proposed legislation pending a vote in Congress that would allow qualifying college students and military recruits who are undocumented to obtain conditional legal status.

While various versions of the bill have been circulating for nearly a decade, the DREAM Act's latest round through the legislative system has inspired a full-blown student movement. College students, many of them undocumented, have staged rallies, sit-ins, hunger strikes and caravans to the nation's capital. Several have come out publicly about their status to make a statement, including prominent student leaders. And the movement, in turn, has inspired art in the form of posters, fliers, even an comic strip.

In September, shortly before a defense bill that carried the DREAM Act was voted down in the Senate, I interviewed cartoonist Julio Salgado, an undocumented twentysomething Cal State Long Beach journalism student. Salgado's online comic strip, “Liberty for All,” follows the story of a young woman who arrived with her family illegally as a child, has finished college, but can’t get a regular job because of her status. The comic has become popular with college students pushing for the legislation.

Salgado's art, along with that of several others, is featured in the ColorLines roundup.

A vote on the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, reintroduced as a separate bill following the September vote, could take place as early as this week.