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View Full Version : Vandalism by American Youth and How It Could Easily Be Avoided



wheelchairman
08-10-2005, 11:51 PM
So, for the past 3 weeks I spent some time again with the friends in America, that I grew up with. And there are striking differences in behavior among youth in the United States and the people I grew up with.

In Denmark for example, vandalism really is something that only occurs among the ages of 12-14 and so. In Eugene, I spent a few nights doing petty vandalism stuff. Like going to the dollar store, and buying an insane amount of string. And ten spending the hours wrapping up a basketball court near a high school. We only stopped because we saw someone inside the nearby school.

Because we had extra string since we had to leave early, my friend and I decided to string off a secluded street. We also left a trail of string around busy parts of downtown. (this was dumb, because it led the cops right to us. However me being foreign, and my friend and I also being liars, were able to say that we lived out of state, and currently were living in a car with no address, and no contacts in this state and that I am foreign.) So they really couldn't do anything. It did convince me though, that for some cops, their motivation in choosing their career is correlated to the size of their penis.

Also things like stealing shopping carts, and then using a pickup truck to get the carts going 40 mph and watching them crash.

Anyways, for months my friends have also been making detailed stencils using photoshop, in which they spraypaint these images on different public places. Pictures of Al Capone, pictures of Abraham Lincoln, anything that really occurs to them.

And there is one reason for all of this. People our age in the states have no legal things to do past the hour of 10 at night.

I mean, what do they have? You could find a girl and then make out for several hours. Because the American attitude towards sex is so bizarre. Sex was always taught in schools as a bad choice unless your married. Condums are hard to get. And girls call each other sluts, so needless to say, sex isn't so common.

Drinking, is definitely not an option. You can get arrested for merely having alcohol in your blood (which stays in your blood for 3 days, btw). This is my main point. American youth can't drink. And that, in my opinion, causes this weird acts of random vandalism. There is absolutely no night life. Downtown is reserved for those with enough money and age to go to clubbing. Bars close early and you have to be 21. There is no recourse for partying. Unless it's school organized. And I can gaurantee you, America may go to sleep at 10 pm, but their youth doesn't.

Also a complete lack of a public transportation system that doesn't suck (except with a few exceptions in America, like Chicago), can be blamed for this.

sKratch
08-11-2005, 01:29 AM
Umm... I think you're totally wrong. If your way of dealing with boredom is vandalism, that's not a fault of the system if you ask me. In general, I blame it on parental neglect and maybe poor parenting. Of course, some people are just more prone to certain types of behavior than others. I find it rather naive to say "we can't do anything else, so it's not our fault we turn to vandalism."

Furthermore, there are plenty of legal things you can do past 10pm if you're under 21. Even under 18. That is unless your town/city/whatever sucks hardcore. There's bowling, movies, hanging out at a friend's house, going to a diner or other 24 hour eatery, or going somewhere outside and not vandalizing. Also, the reason kid's aren't allowed to do a lot of things is because of how fucking stupid they act. For instance, a lot of malls are starting policies where children are not allowed to shop without a chapperone. Bowling alleys are requiring chapperones after 10pm, etc. Why? Because kids act like morons and break things etc. How's being allowed to drink going to make that any better?

I have to disagree again when it comes to your view of how sex is looked at. I dunno about where you live, but my friends here don't have a problem with getting action. Well I do, because I suck at girls, but that's a different story. Condoms are readily available for purchase, but I've never looked into free distribution around home.

And when it comes to drinking, as I've said, this can make stupid behavior even more stupid. It often does, in fact. And I've never heard of someone underaged getting arrested for having alcohol in their blood unless they were driving. And in order to get your BAC checked, you have to be doing something stupid, which merits some sort of punishment anyways. I've never been walking down the road and seen a table set up by the cops checking kid's BACs.

Public transportation sucks, this is true. But Americans drive a LOT. It wouldn't make sense for municipal funds to cater to dependent youth by expanding public transportation. Most states let you drive by the time you're 16 anyways, and when I was younger than that I didn't really go out late. But yes, we don't have the best public transport in general.

So pretty much, I disagree with you wholeheartedly on this topic.

wheelchairman
08-11-2005, 07:33 AM
Hmm these are just hypothesis, I could be wrong.

I'm just trying to figure out why there is such pointless vandalism in Eugene, Oregon, and not anywhere in Denmark.

And I think you're wrong about the drinking. Getting shitfaced is a college/university thing. Most people, my age or younger, will go to bars for example. Drink with friends, drink to relax, drink while playing poker. Whatever, it changes the scenery without having to actually do anything. While in America (and in Oregon, having alcohol inside you is an arrestable offence.), drinking is risky business when you're a minor. You can go to a bowling alley, but can you go to a bowling alley every night? Or a friend's house? I mean, I was there for just 2 weeks. But even just hanging out got boring. And I went to those all night dining places at least twice, however that can get pretty pricey, even if you just stick to the value menues.

And I think when it comes down to it, alcohol just makes sleep come faster and steadier in a boring summer.

As far as sex goes, think high school age. I know College is just one long fuckfest. And nothing wrong with that. What I saw among my friends and among the people they knew, sex was treated as rare, and people often just used it for the wrong reasons and shit.

As far as driving goes, about half my friends had cars, the other half depended on the half that did have cars. However, it is far cheaper to have a functioning public transportation system. You save on gas and the expense of buying a car. Especially if you're the half that doesn't have a car.

Brines
08-11-2005, 07:39 AM
I'm with you, WCM. Tagging's about the only thing to do at night. You're gonna have to explain to me how you did the stencils, because I've been trying to make some and I suck hardcore at it.

NOAMR
08-11-2005, 10:00 AM
Hm, I more agree with wheelchairman who says vandalism is caused cuz of boredom. I also think the restrictions for the yougth of America are way to hard(well, I've never been there, but from what I heard). You schould let kids experiment and let them make a little bit mistakes, cuz if you hold them too much, they'll fly away with full off power and so destruction.
I spray graffiti myself, I didn't really started with it cuz off boredom, just cuz I don't see what the problem with it is(if it isn't on private property...) and I tought it could be nice(and it was). But tagging is still something else, I think vandalism is mostly cuz off boredom, what doesn't mean you aren't guilthy or something off course. I personally write and draw a lot when I'm bored(writomanie:)), in class etc(just on my own stuff). 'bout the stencilling: I don't think it is that hard, just take a cardboard or heavy paper, cut out what you wonna spray and spray! What's the problemyou have with it?

sKratch
08-11-2005, 10:35 AM
I never really drank before I went to college, but the high school kids I know around here drink to get shitfaced.

Little_Miss_1565
08-11-2005, 10:51 AM
AHEM! I take issue with this! You say the transportation system in Chicago doesn't suck! Lies!

Brines
08-11-2005, 10:54 AM
Hm, I more agree with wheelchairman who says vandalism is caused cuz of boredom. I also think the restrictions for the yougth of America are way to hard(well, I've never been there, but from what I heard). You schould let kids experiment and let them make a little bit mistakes, cuz if you hold them too much, they'll fly away with full off power and so destruction.
I spray graffiti myself, I didn't really started with it cuz off boredom, just cuz I don't see what the problem with it is(if it isn't on private property...) and I tought it could be nice(and it was). But tagging is still something else, I think vandalism is mostly cuz off boredom, what doesn't mean you aren't guilthy or something off course. I personally write and draw a lot when I'm bored(writomanie:)), in class etc(just on my own stuff). 'bout the stencilling: I don't think it is that hard, just take a cardboard or heavy paper, cut out what you wonna spray and spray! What's the problemyou have with it?


I mean like complex multi-colored stencils.

SicN Twisted
08-11-2005, 10:57 AM
I think I'm alone in saying there's nothing wrong with vandalism - it's a wonderful youthful past time that goes along with drunkenness wonderfully. Especially graffitti. Spraypainted tags are beautiful art that "vandals" spraypaint on walls, and there's an old culture behind it that I really appreciate. Common guys, stop talking about ways to end vandalism and accept it as something that's always gonna happen that's really not that bad.

Brines
08-11-2005, 12:00 PM
I think I'm alone in saying there's nothing wrong with vandalism - it's a wonderful youthful past time that goes along with drunkenness wonderfully. Especially graffitti. Spraypainted tags are beautiful art that "vandals" spraypaint on walls, and there's an old culture behind it that I really appreciate. Common guys, stop talking about ways to end vandalism and accept it as something that's always gonna happen that's really not that bad.


Preach, brotha, preach!

shadowind
08-11-2005, 12:12 PM
vandalism is basicly the willful or malicious destruction or defacement of propertythat doesn't belong to you and if you want beer theres like 5 ways i can think off the top of my head a minor can get it buy it steal it have it given to him find it or make his own

i agree with scratch on this one

sKratch
08-11-2005, 12:51 PM
One entry found for vandalism.
Main Entry: van·dal·ism
Pronunciation: 'van-d&l-"i-z&m
Function: noun
: willful or malicious destruction or defacement of public or private property

Well at least you reworded "public or private property".

I'm not sure what the point of your post was besides copying and pasting the dictionary definition of vandalism...

NOAMR
08-11-2005, 01:29 PM
I think I'm alone in saying there's nothing wrong with vandalism - it's a wonderful youthful past time that goes along with drunkenness wonderfully. Especially graffitti. Spraypainted tags are beautiful art that "vandals" spraypaint on walls, and there's an old culture behind it that I really appreciate. Common guys, stop talking about ways to end vandalism and accept it as something that's always gonna happen that's really not that bad.

Well, I agree with you, at least when it's just tagging. Vandalism is also destroying others property, and I don't think that's good. Well, some people don't like tags, and so it's unrespectfull if you tag on their property. Not that that happen a lot.

Betty
08-11-2005, 10:40 PM
I drank relatively often when I was 16. I had sex when I was 16. I drove when I was 16. We went to the drugstore to buy condoms. We had older friends buy us booze, or sometimes I drank with my family. Maybe things are much more uptight in the US... Also, sKratch mentionned a bunch of things to do (which there ARE if you are creative)... another one which I still do very often to this day is GO TO CONCERTS... also playing pool was always fun... or playing sports (not necessarily at night, but during the evening).

Anyway, I agree that drinking makes problems worse. The argument that people drink to relax, etc... does not totally work, because I believe that those who are inclined to vandalize/cause trouble will be worse with alcohol, and those who would not have those inclinations would be fine under the influence of alcohol.

I am not a fan of destructive vandalism at ALL, but really, I don't mind graffiti too much, especially on old buildings/trains/things that really aren't that important, because in general it is quite artistic.

I think, Per, that the difference probably comes down to an entirely different frame of mind. Perhaps by being provided with more independence in Denmark (if that is what you're implying with the allowing to drink - hence being mature about it - and the use of public transportation), youth take more responsibility for their actions and grow up faster. I'm really not sure.

RXP
08-12-2005, 01:19 AM
Drinking makes things a lot worse look no further than here.

Betty you got to do everything cause your rich and have good looks (for the sex).

If people exercised they'd work off all that gay agression. but they're too lazy. It's all about sports. Have more places to play or lift.

MichealCorleone
08-12-2005, 09:29 AM
Drinking makes things a lot worse look no further than here.

Betty you got to do everything cause your rich and have good looks (for the sex).

If people exercised they'd work off all that gay agression. but they're too lazy. It's all about sports. Have more places to play or lift.

* you're, aggressive

noodlesfan
08-12-2005, 06:04 PM
look, nothing says lets make my sort of shitty town, completely shitty, like spraypainting the word facist on the school doors
GOD DAMN GIRAFFES!!

SicN Twisted
08-12-2005, 07:36 PM
Not only do I think there's no problem with graffiti, but I love it and I oh so envy anyone who can write it (I try, but I suck). Destructive vandalism I guess is morally wrong, but I still personally don't have a problem with it because without a certain amount of reletively meaningless chaos, wouldn't life just get borring? Yeah, break some windows, put bombs in mailboxes. Being destructive I think is natural for teenagers (and Per, it's not particualrly more common in the US then in Europe. Back when I was in France, me and my friends used to seriously wreck shit) - it gives you a certain kick that you can't get from drinking or going to concerts. It's just fun in it's own right and it's something that will always exist in society, so frankly, I don't have a problem with it.

sKratch
08-13-2005, 12:52 AM
I'm not a huge fan of most types of graffiti. Like in the Cortlandt Town Center the back of an entrance sign at that 3 way intersection with the stop signs has something sprayed on it, and it just looks really ugly. It puts a damper on the atmosphere for me.

I also saw Tepper walking around :E

HornyPope
08-13-2005, 01:31 PM
Not sure about vandalism but the youth in Europe is definatly more bent on drinking than anywhere else ive seen. Just today I shared a wagon with a hundred some teenagers packing hundreds of bottles and chanting soccer chants on their way to a game in Hannover. Pretty wild.

SicN Twisted
08-13-2005, 02:01 PM
That graffitti you're mentioning isn't particularly good, but have you noticed the graffitti by the train tracks when you take the train into Grand Central? That graffitti is beautiful, and it's the kind of graffitti I support.

Betty
08-13-2005, 02:15 PM
No, it is not "aggressive"... what the fuck? I agree about the sports however as being a really good outlet.

Also, drinking and driving (not at the same time) do not have to do with being rich. If your priority is to spend money on booze (or cigarettes... totally expensive but a lot of poorer people smoke) then you will. And as for driving... in Canada/the US at least it's much more common to have family vehicles. So as long as your parents are the type to let you borrow them, it doesn't matter if you're driving a piece of shit car. Now I'm 21 and don't drive because I'm a student so couldn't afford my own vehicle.

Sin Studly
08-13-2005, 10:49 PM
You need to be rich to drink and drive? Right, since fortified box wine is $2 a litre and boosting cars was a popular extra-curricular hobby in my high school?