Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Unjust Callings

I don’t blame people who not appreciate graffiti since the only information they have about it comes from graffiti removal companies, government and several other associations. They mostly try to use scare tactics and strong words to impose their views on it.

I read multiple articles that stated that graffiti can generate fear, crime and intimidate neighborhoods and I fail to see how that is so. Personally, I do not find it more terrifying to walk in a alley covered with graffiti then one without or how a tag on a wall can cause a higher crime rate. They use words with evocative power like “Vandalism” , knowing there is no such crime. The law proscribes malicious mischief, malicious damage, petty damage, littering and the destruction of property but not “vandalism”. The word “vandalism” was linked to graffiti thanks to the press, since they and the politicians knew they had to give the mass appeal a word that evoked much more than what it was. And this is how the press and the commercial world is able to affect one’s perspective or opinion.

Associations like graffiti removal companies want to be able to grow their business and still charge a large amount of money, the authorities know that the influence is too powerful and it has a political impact on society. So like them the National Council to Prevent Delinquency (NCPD) evokes fear to control one’s opinion, even if they do not know much about it themselves. The NCPD stated “Gang graffiti is used to mark gang territory, list members, offer drugs or contraband for sale, or send warnings to rivals. It may include letters, symbols, or numbers known only by gangs and law enforcement”. All these organizations give somewhat the same reasons that are completely false and give writing a bad name. Imagine if someone reads this for the first time, he will be more likely to think of graffiti in negative terms, even though what they are saying is false. That is why our goal is to inform as many people about writing, so they can make their own minds up, without having their thoughts polluted and to make society more aware and therefore more tolerant about this matter.

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