graffiti is art
Debate Rounds (2)
Since the late 80"s, after the New York graffiti boom, young adults have been showcasing their art through designs on public walls. It symbolizes the new style, the new pop culture. But at what cost? According to graffitihurts.com, LA County spends over twenty-eight millions dollars on graffiti removal. In this essay, I will discuss how graffiti is vandalism, how it hurts, graffiti"s link to crime, how communities and police respond, and then address any comments against my position.
"As long as it is painted on public property, it"s a crime."(page 2, paragraph 7) the dictionary definition of vandalism is the defacement of public private property.(Webster"s School Dictionary, page 1018) Most graffiti artists choose to make their art on public spaces because it is more visible. In fact, the four main reasons for graffiti are rebellion, fame, self-expression, and power. Through vandalism, the artists have an outlet to express themselves, a way of rebellion of rebellion against the government"s laws, and the fame from pictures surfacing on social media. Once the photos are uploaded, other aspiring artists see the art and think, "If they can do it, so can I."
Graffiti also has a huge impact on the economy. The city of Chicago, Illinois budgeted upwards of six-point-five million in graffiti removal. Billions of tax dollars are spent on graffiti cleanup. "These people don"t have any respect for property"."(page 2, paragraph 8) Most graffiti vandals don"t even buy their supplies, according to the U.S. Department of Justice; nearly all of these defacers shoplift to obtain their paints and markers. Is it fair that our tax money is being spent on restoring public walls after being doodled on by a rebellious teen? On top of that, graffiti also contributes to the decrease of transportation, property, and retail sales. Many riders on public transit systems are frightened by the graffiti on the buses and trains. Likewise, would you want to solicit in a graffiti ridden store with the constant fear of these shady vandals? Vandalized properties also lose value. Most people wouldn"t want to purchase real estate in a heavily vandalized area, causing less property value and more affluent people in cities.
"Graffiti sometime has a wave effect, in which a heavily vandalized area will experience an increase in other sorts of crimes." (graffiti:artthroughvandalism.com, paragraph 5) studies show that people are more likely to litter in a vandalized area than in a stately area. Stealing and gangs are also coherent with graffiti. Many people see graffiti as a "gateway crime." Since vandalism is mainly committed by adolescents, it may lead young felons to more serious crimes like drug abuse or first-degree burglary."Graffiti is not a petty crime. Most people do not realize how serious it is and the problems it brings to neighborhoods. My experience has shown me that there is direct correlation between graffiti and serious crime. When we were able to significantly reduce graffiti in a community, we saw a considerable reduction in violent and gang crime as well." - Commander Michael Rothans, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department
"Vandalism is usually seen as a quality of life issue. When an area has extensive graffiti, people tend to view it as a "bad neighborhood"" (graffiti:artthroughvandalism.com, paragraph 7) The public views graffiti as a nuisance because it usually is negative and an eyesore. In fact, 10% of it is gang related. 56% of high schools and 36% of the defacement is hate related. Graffiti promotes fear, fear of gangs, fear of crime. This defacement only displays to the public that the community is rundown and has almost given up on stopping crime. Do you feel safe driving through the graffiti-ridden streets of west LA? If your community was filled with graffiti, portraying a sense of lawlessness and gangs, would you want to move?
One of the main reasons people draw graffiti is because they want their art displayed publicly. In fact, in some places they set up walls where you are supposed to display graffiti. I agree, graffiti is wrong, but it is for valid reasons (Most of the time). Tell me, how many painting have you seen? Probably many. Who made that painting? You probably don't know. Do you bother to actually pay attention to the painting? Perhaps. But most people don't even look twice at a painting. Meanwhile. when there is graffiti on a wall, most people pay attention. All the people want is publicity.
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