Lalo Alcaraz

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Lalo Alcaraz is a Mexican-American cartoonist. He is most known for being the author of the comic La Cucaracha, the first nationally syndicated, politically themed Latino daily comic strip.[1] Launched in 2002, La Cucaracha has become one of the most controversial in the history of American comic strips.[2] He is also the creator of the figure "Daniel D. Portado", a satirical Hispanic character who in the 1994 called on Mexican immigrants to return south—""reverse immigration"—as a response to the controversial Proposition 187.[3] In 2012, Daniel D. Portado returned to the headlines as a result of Mitt Romneys call, during his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, on illegal immigrants to exercise "self-deportation."[4]

A leading figure in the Chicano movement,[5][6][7] Alcaraz also contributes political cartoons for LA Weekly and hosts a radio show on KPFK called the "Pocho Hour of Power."[8][9] He also contributed a work of art to the 2008 Obama campaign called "Viva Obama".[10] Alcaraz teaches as a faculty member at Otis College of Art & Design.[11]


Alcaraz was born in San Diego in 1964 and grew up on the U.S./Mexico border, giving him a dual outlook on life (not "Mexican" enough for his relatives, not "American" enough for some in the U.S.).[12] He attended San Diego State University, where he received his bachelor's degree "With Distinction" in Art and Environmental Design in 1987. In 1991, Alcaraz earned his master's degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley.[13]

Publications and presentations[edit]

In addition to the daily strip, Alcaraz has published two books, La Cucaracha (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2004) and Migra Mouse: Political Cartoons on Immigration (RDF Books, 2004). Alcaraz is also an active speaker on the college circuit.[14][15][16] He is represented by The Agency Group in Los Angeles.[17]

Alcaraz is the "Jefe-in-Chief"[18] of POCHO.COM, a website specializing in "Ñews y Satire".


Alcaraz has received five Southern California Journalism Awards for Best Cartoon in Weekly Papers, and numerous other awards and honors, including "The Latino Spirit Award" from the California Legislature and the Office of the Lt. Governor, honors from the Los Angeles City Council, The California Chicano News Media Association, the UC Berkeley Chicano Latino Alumni Association, the United Farm Workers of America, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, the Center for the Study of Political Graphics, and The Rockefeller Foundation.[19]

Dia de Los Muertos[edit]

In response to the Disney Corporation's attempt to trademark Dia de Los Muertos, Alcaraz helped lead a social activist campaign which eventually led to Disney's scrapping of the idea.[20] In particular, Alcaraz's "Muerto Mouse" (itself an offshoot of his early "Migra Mouse") criticized the Disney campaign with the byline "It's coming to trademark your cultura."[21][22]


  1. ^ [1][dead link]
  2. ^ Seth Wolf (2004-10-12). "San Francisco Bay Guardian Arts and Entertainment". 
  3. ^ Kumar, Ankali (28 March 1996). "Chicano cartoonist entertains students". The Daily Pennsylvanian. Retrieved 2 February 2012. 
  4. ^ "Daniel D. Portado: The Original Self-Deportationist". News Taco. 2 February 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2012. 
  5. ^ Anonymous. "Splinters: Lalo Alcaraz: Chicano Political Cartoonist". Retrieved 2005-11-05. 
  6. ^ Wegner, Kyle David. "ProQuest Document View - Children of Aztlan| Mexican American popular culture and the post-Chicano aesthetic". 
  7. ^ "National Association of Latino Arts and Culture - Bios Los Angeles". 
  8. ^ "Lalo Alcaraz On Arizona's New Anti-immigration Legislation". 
  9. ^ "Pocho Hour Of Power". 
  10. ^ Severns, Jeff. "Viva Obama Artist Gets the Academic Treatment". Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  11. ^ [2][dead link]
  12. ^ "La Cucaracha Comic Strip on". 2002-11-25. 
  13. ^ "Universal Uclick". Retrieved 2013-10-31. 
  14. ^ "Lalo Alcaraz Named Keynote Speaker at Luminaria Award Dinner". Retrieved 2011-03-09. 
  15. ^ "Leadership conference shows many paths to successful careers". El Hispanic News. Retrieved 2011-04-07. 
  16. ^ "César E. Chávez Center for Higher Education". 
  17. ^ "The Agency Group | Lalo Alcaraz". Retrieved 2013-10-31. 
  18. ^ "Our management and editorial honchos". Pocho. Retrieved 2013-10-31. 
  19. ^ "Local Hero: Lalo Alcaraz | Hispanic Heritage Month | Local Heroes". KCET. Retrieved 2010-09-15. 
  20. ^ Lalo Alcaraz (2013-05-07). "Walt Disney, Inc. wants to trademark ‘Dia de los Muertos’ (toon)". Pocho. Retrieved 2013-10-31. 
  21. ^ Arellano, Gustavo (2013-05-08). "Lalo Alcaraz Creates Amazing "Muerto Mouse" Cartoon in Response to Disney "Dia de los Muertos" Fiasco". Retrieved 2013-10-31. 
  22. ^ Renteria, Ramon (May 12, 2013). "Ramon Renteria: 'Muerto Mouse' seeks cash, not cheese". El Paso Times. Retrieved 2013-10-31. 

External links[edit]