Strike and in Style
By Travis Loller
Irina Arellano has always been a stylish revolutionary. Six years ago, when she first arrived in the Bay Area, she was a green-haired, pierced punk rocker who had come to California from Mexico hoping to find work and fellow vegetarians.
Last March the 26-year-old came back, this time as a graphic-design student wearing baggy pants and a pony tail. She was in California on a speaking tour representing students at Mexico City's National Autonomous University of Mexico, or UNAM, the largest university in Latin America, with a quarter of a million students. A strike there last April over a proposed tuition hike shut down the campus for nine months. "I came to let people know what is happening," she says. "Because even though the strike was big news in Mexico, the American press has ignored us."