BREAKING DOWN ANTI GRAFFITI PROPAGANDA: LA TIMES

Revok’s recent arrest, like all graffiti arrests, brought out the usual slanted coverage about the graffiti moment.  The lynch mob in the comments section that follows this blurb is equally typical and seems almost staged.  I’m always skeptical of articles’ “comment” sections as they don’t reflect a balanced view generally.   I’ve included my comments in (BOLD CAPS). See Below Article.

THE SO CALLED “ARTICLE”

L.A. Sheriff’s Department busts reputed tagger who was ‘guest artist’ at graffiti art store
November 23, 2009 |  9:34 am

A reputed tagger who was paid $1,000 to be a featured “guest artist” at a self-described graffiti art store was arrested at the downtown store this weekend after authorities found him carrying spray tips, which are used in tagging, officials said today.

(OK HERE WE GO:

• WE START WITH THE WORD “TAGGER” A TERM FORCE FED AND TO THE PUBLIC AND VILIFIED AS HAVING NO MERIT OR SOCIAL CONTEXT AND BEING THE ONLY COMPONENT OF A LARGER GLOBAL ART MOVEMENT.

• FOLLOW THAT UP WITH THIS LITTLE JEM, “GUEST ARTIST” IN QUOTES, AS IF THERE IS A QUESTION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT HE’S AN ARTIST.  FUCKING DUCHAMP CALLED A URINAL ART PEOPLE.

• THEN THAT’S FOLLOWED BY THE MODIFIER “SELF DESCRIBED” IN FRONT OF GRAFFITI ART STORE.  IMPLYING AGAIN THAT IT’S NOT A LEGITIMATE BUSINESS THAT SELLS PERFECTLY LEGAL PRODUCTS TO PEOPLE OF AGE.

• NEXT UP THEY MENTION THAT HE WAS ARRESTED FOR HAVING “SPRAY TIPS” AND THAT “SPRAY TIPS” ARE USED FOR “TAGGING”, A BROAD GENERALIZATION.  ON A SIDE NOTE, I GENERALLY ONLY TAG WITH MARKERS.

• MY LAST BEEF WITH THIS SENTENCE IS A COMMON PIECE OF NEWSY LANGUAGE, “OFFICIALS SAID”.  OH SHIT, DID OFFICIALS SAY SOMETHING?  DAMN, PUT A GOLDEN SEAL ON WHAT THAT MAN SAID.  TO PUT THINGS IN PERSPECTIVE, CHENEY WAS AN OFFICIAL.

LET ME EDIT YOUR SENTENCE FELLAS:

“A WELL KNOWN GRAFFITI WRITER, WHO WAS PAID $1,000 TO BE A GUEST ARTIST AT A GRAFFITI ART STORE WAS ARRESTED AT THE DOWNTOWN STORE THIS WEEKEND AFTER AUTHORITIES FOUND HIM CARRYING SPRAY TIPS WHICH ARE USED WITH SPRAY PAINT, A SPOKESPERSON FOR THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE SAID TODAY.”)

Jason Williams, 32, who was on probation and goes by the name REVOK, was appearing Sunday as the guest of honor at the 33rd Graffiti Art Store, said Sgt. Augie Pando of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The store was exhibiting Montana spray paint, a brand used by taggers, (AGAIN WITH THE TAGGERS) Pando said.  During a later search of Williams’ home, deputies found several hundred paint cans, a police badge and a fire extinguisher, Pando said. They also found a stolen detour sign and digital photos of his graffiti work on his phone.

(DEPENDING ON THE TERMS OF HIS PROBATION THE ONLY THINGS THAT ARE POTENTIALLY ILLEGAL ARE THE STREET SIGN AND THE SHERIFFS BADGE.  ON A SIDE NOTE, HOW DOPE IS IT THAT HE HAS A SHERIFF’S BADGE.  THAT’S SO FLETCH.)

“He’s being treated as a celebrity artist when in fact he’s breaking the law,” said Steve Whitmore, a sheriff’s spokesman.

(UM, MR. WHITMORE, HE IS “IN FACT” A CELEBRITY ARTIST WHICH IS WHY HE WAS BEING PAID TO SHOW UP AT A LEGAL ART EVENT.   BY BREAKING THE LAW, LETS BE CLEAR, IN THIS INSTANCE WE’RE TALKING ABOUT POSSESSING SPRAY TIPS AT A LEGAL GRAFFITI ART EVENT WHERE HE’S BEING PAID TO PAINT.)


Williams was arrested on suspicion of illegally possessing vandalism tools, a counterfeit Los Angeles Police Department badge, and receiving stolen property, the sheriff’s department said.

Sheriff’s officials said Williams told them that he earns a living selling T-shirts and prints and said he was paid $1,000 to attend the art exhibit.
He is being held on $20,000 bail.

— Andrew Blankstein and Richard Winton

(WHY IT TOOK TWO DUDES TO WRITE THIS IS BEYOND ME)


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