Unemployment, Pop Culture Blamed for Graffiti Boom

Monday, 18 Jul 2011 03:38 PM

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Graffiti, a blight once restricted mainly to major urban centers such as New York and Chicago, is making its way into smaller cities in America. Cities such as Nashville and Portland, Ore., as well as Florence, Ala.; Reserve, N.M.; and Taylors, S.C., are experiencing the tags that some aficionados contend are art, The New York Times reported.

Graffiti, unemployment, pop culture“It’s popped up all of a sudden in the last six months,” Tim Sandrell, the owner of Safari Adventures in Hair in Florence, with a population between 36,000 and 37,000. “I’ve been downtown for 10 years, and I’m really disappointed that we are seeing this kind of activity. We have a beautiful city and an historic city, and it’s really upsetting to me seeing this going on.”

The graffiti binge has renewed debate over whether putting the colorful displays in museums contributes to urban blight and whether the resurgence might be related to high unemployment rates and the poor shape of the economy.

Tim Francis, a supervisor for the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina, told the Times there had been a rash of tagging on park signs, underpasses, and on the parkway. One large city that also has seen an uptick is Los Angeles, where the unemployment rate was 11 percent in May. The city removed 35.4 million square feet of graffiti for the fiscal year, an 8.2 percent jump over last year.

A number of officials place blame the economy for idling teenagers and contributing to a sense of malaise and anxiety.

“People know the cops aren’t around or they are working on other stuff,” said Bobby Shriver, a member of the Santa Monica City Council. Others, including police, see a glamorization of graffiti that makes wealthy heroes of such practitioners such as Marc Ecko or Banksy or Shepard Fairey and launch graffiti exhibits in museums, the Times reported.

“It’s because of the pop culture,” Ramona Findley, a Los Angeles police detective who heads the department’s graffiti task force, told the paper. “It’s very interesting: With your violent crime going down, it seems like your mischievous crime is going up. The art world has accepted it. People make money from graffiti T-shirts. I was in Walmart on Easter, and I saw graffiti Easter eggs.”

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Montel Williams Skeptical of VA Deal, Still Calls for 'Surge'

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 20:48 PM

Montel Williams, who has been advocating for a VA Surge to clear the backlog of veterans needing healthcare, is skepti . . .

Norquist Raises Brows With Plan to Attend 'Burning Man' Fest

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 20:16 PM

Tax-reform conservative Grover Norquist lit up Twitter on Monday, declaring his plan to "scratch one from the bucket lis . . .

Suspect Featured on CNN's 'The Hunt' Killed During Arrest Attempt

Monday, 28 Jul 2014 19:48 PM

Charles Mozdir, a suspected sex offender who had recently been featured on John Walsh's CNN series The Hunt died durin . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved