I spoke with a couple DREAM Act leaders to talk about the power of humor in such a politically precarious situation.
First, here’s Luis Serrano, who contributed one of the first memes to catch on, depicting President Obama laughing with his staff about family separation.
Tell me about the President Obama UndocuMeme (pictured above), and why there’s so much buzz about the forum.
When I saw the picture of President Obama laughing, that’s just what I thought about. Humor helps you escape all of the seriousness. That’s what humor is for, to express this crazy reality. It’s funny how you find humor about your own situation. We are politically aware about our reality and we make fun of it.
Why might some people be surprised to see memes that spark controversy and point to humor in the hardships of undocumented life?
Some people may expect us to be these polished perfect people that don’t commit any errors. We’re only human and we’re regular people. I kind of want to make people feel at ease and that it’s cool to be who you are and embrace it. I’m happy people are enjoying it and finding a humorous outlet. Also it’s a forum, we take submissions and there’s really different reaction from everyone on the different topics.
Now, Tania Unzueta, a graduate student at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s Latin American And Latino Studies Program, and a co-founder of the Immigrant Youth Justice League. She’s currently writing a paper on undocumented humor.