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New York Cracks Down On Graffiti Artists

Discussion in 'Third Rail' started by TrustUGN, Jan 10, 2006.

  1. TrustUGN

    TrustUGN Member

    Joined: Oct 15, 2001 Messages: 362 Likes Received: 0
    Here's the link

    Here's the story...

    NEW YORK (AFP) - Having waged a long and largely successful war against its prolific graffiti artists, New York is seeking to disarm the city's holdout "spray-painting punks" once and for all.

    Since January 1, a raft of new restrictions have come into force, including raising from 18 to 21 the age at which it is legal to possess "graffiti instruments," such as etching acid, aerosol paint cans and broad-tipped indelible markers.

    More draconian is a statute making anyone deemed in possession of such instruments with the intent to "make graffiti" subject to arrest.

    Newly re-elected mayor, Michael Bloomberg, said the new laws were "common sense measures" that would keep New York clean and beautiful.

    The municipal council member behind the new restrictions, Peter Vallone, was less restrained in touting their importance.

    "We realise these bills push the envelope. But it's time to get serious," Vallone told the Daily News. "We can no longer let these spray-painting punks use our city as their unmarked canvas."

    The city initiative has reignited a long-running debate between the defenders of graffiti as legitimate street art and those who view its proponents as little more than vandals.

    Donna Lieberman, the executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said the bills were an "embarrassment" and an example of the city overeaching to criminalise a "perfectly lawful, protected, expressive activity."

    "It's one thing to ban the unlawful marking of a building, but it's crazy to criminalise carrying around a pen!" Lieberman said.

    Urban graffiti peaked in New York in the mid-1970s, most notably on the subway system, where large numbers of competing artists, or "writers," daubed the train exteriors with their elaborate, sprayed creations.

    Increased transport security and the development of graffiti-resistant materials saw the underground movement dwindle away by the start of the 1990s and many writers either gave up or went mainstream, working for advertising companies or even championed by art dealers.

    Their street work has not completely disappeared, with graffiti marks still popping up on sections of walls, bridges and abandoned factories, especially in the boroughs outside Manhattan.

    "It's always been more of a hobby for most writers," said KET, a 35-year-old graffiti legend turned publisher, who prefers to be identified by his writer's "tag."

    "It's something that we do or we did very much full time when we were kids and then later turns something that we do more as a form of recreation than a full time activity," he told AFP.

    For KET, the new legislation is not only unfair, but also impractical because it focuses on punishment rather than prevention.

    "None of it is going to stop graffiti, none of it is going to stop people from painting," he said. "No matter what laws you create there's still a need for people to express themselves publicly and that's never going to change."

    He also echoed Lieberman in arguing that the measures went way too far.

    "I don't think that everyone that carries around spray paint is a graffiti writer," he said. "It makes it a tough thing just for regular students, which I don't think is really fair.

    KET believes a better initiative would be to begin treating graffiti as a genuine form of cultural expression.

    "Then maybe more and more people would move towards the art form versus the vandalism side of it," he said.

    One motivating factor behind the new bills is a slight resurgence in subway graffiti, with writers using etching acid to create indelible marks on the train windows.

    "I think it's a very clever way for writers to introduce their names back into the subway which is where a lot of writers feel like their names belong," KET said.
  2. Harvey Wallbanger

    Harvey Wallbanger Dirty Dozen Crew

    Joined: Oct 13, 2004 Messages: 8,567 Likes Received: 401
  3. !@#$%

    [email protected]#$% Moderator Crew

    Joined: Oct 1, 2002 Messages: 18,517 Likes Received: 623
    clean and beautiful?
    they might wanna think about picking up some of the trash too.
  4. mugshot

    mugshot Member

    Joined: Feb 24, 2002 Messages: 490 Likes Received: 0
    me and a couple of buddies came out of retirement last weekend and wrecked some shit for the sole purpose of saying fuck you to this bill. we'll be out again cause now we all have the itch, thanks vallone
  5. Gunm

    Gunm Banned

    Joined: Aug 31, 2003 Messages: 12,427 Likes Received: 2
    Yeah, and rounding up the homeless and packing them off to forced labor camps
  6. CurtisWarren

    CurtisWarren Member

    Joined: Jan 10, 2006 Messages: 306 Likes Received: 3
    Once again the powers that be trying to shift blame for a fucked up society on graffiti.Quality of life? Bollocks.
  7. why write?

    why write? Veteran Member

    Joined: Oct 19, 2003 Messages: 5,859 Likes Received: 1
    who cares, trains are getting hit....streets are getting bombed. did laws stop anyone from doing anything in the first place? no, will they stop anyone now? nope.
  8. MELLOness

    MELLOness Junior Member

    Joined: Nov 21, 2005 Messages: 242 Likes Received: 0
    Graffiti will never die.
  9. mackfatsoe

    mackfatsoe Veteran Member

    Joined: Oct 8, 2004 Messages: 6,532 Likes Received: 168
    Naw dude, I merked graffiti yesterday. Game over.
  10. Seca...

    Seca... New Jack

    Joined: Aug 17, 2005 Messages: 10 Likes Received: 0
    i think its madd bucked how how politicians always OD with graff laws. its just a political tactic to get them re-elected...they could focuse more on getting real crime down but people dont see that with their own two eyes as much as they see graffiti so theyd rather attempt to bring dow something more personally noticable than something statistical...my friend just got hasled for having a sharpie in his pocket and walking into a courthouse, it was mad funny
  11. GLIK$

    GLIK$ Dirty Dozen Crew

    Joined: Jul 23, 2002 Messages: 22,277 Likes Received: 117
    remember when they cracked down on graff in 86? and in 88? Then again in 94? and then again it 99?

    We still do it.
  12. There has been several wars on graffiti - And now we all know there is no graffiti anymore.
    Remember the war on drugs - Yeah, now there are no drugs anymore.
    Hey, they are also fighting the war on terroism, Im sure that will be gone soon too...
  13. Cracksmoka

    Cracksmoka Elite Member

    Joined: Oct 2, 2002 Messages: 4,504 Likes Received: 97
  14. dumy

    dumy Veteran Member

    Joined: Oct 8, 2004 Messages: 5,056 Likes Received: 0
    wow..NYPD is all about those easy arrests..I swear all qualilty of life laws do is give Police Departments a little extra padding when its time to turn in qoutas at the end of the month..fuck the police
  15. murder_suicide

    murder_suicide Junior Member

    Joined: Jan 6, 2006 Messages: 152 Likes Received: 0