One by one, some twenty people—mostly youth—stood under a canopy of butterflies in front of the George Washington statue in New York’s Union Square yesterday, and came out as undocumented. Despite some rain, their allies in the crowd gathered for the fourth annual Coming Out of the Shadows event, a nationwide, month-long push to create a space for people to share their stories with one another. The event took place as undocumented youth have also taken to the internet this week, generating critical conversations about representation in the media, the arts and activism. On Tuesday, Angy Rivera, the person behind the first and only column for undocumented youth, AskAngy, countered artist Faviana Rodriguez’s popular “Migration is Beautiful” image. One her Tumblr, Rivera stated she wasn’t criticizing Rodriguez’s art in general, but that certain narratives “romanticize immigration,” and that there is nothing beautiful about the circumstances that undocumented people face daily.
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