G R A F I TT I
We do not care about persons who paint graffiti on a sanctioned wall with the owner's permission. However, we detest cowards who paint property without consent. That changes the classification from art to vandalism. However, the vandals will still try to justify what they do by claiming it's free expression. They often try to vilify those who oppose them by labeling them oppressors of that free expression. Meanwhile, those same vandals cause hundreds of dollars in damage, drive a businesses customers away and lower property values.
We often ask if a graffiti goon would still call it "art" if it was their property being defaced without permission.
Graffiti can also have a more serious meaning due to being gang related. Gangs can use graffiti to mark territory,advertise drug sales, mourn deceased members, announce alliances and issue threats. All the more reason to report and remove it immediately.
If you see tagging in progress dial 9 1 1
For recent graffiti in Orlando report it to (407) 254-GRAF (4723) or click HERE
For recent Orange County graffiti dial 3 1 1. You may also report it on the free app OCFL 311
M.O.S.T. strongly advises you to remove tags immediately after they get documented by law enforcement. We feel it is bad advice for anyone to advise you to leave the tags up a week or two to prevent retaliation. Letting tags remain sends a message of tolerance, lowers the property value for both you and your neighbors and can drive away your customers or potential property buyers. Not to mention that each day you look at the tag is a reminder of how your property was violated. Who needs that kind of aggravation ?
Parents Information on Gangs and Children
Courtesy Florida Gang Investigators Association
•You should be concerned if your child:
•admits to gang involvement; is obsessed with one particular color of clothing or shows a desire for a particular logo over and over;
•wears sagging pants (this in and of itself is not indicative of gang activity);
•wears excessive jewelry with distinctive designs and may wear it only on either the right or left side of the body;
•is obsessed with gangster-influenced music, videos and movies to the point of imitation;
•withdraws from family with an accompanying change in demeanor;
•associates with undesirable and breaks parental rules consistently;
•develops an unusual desire for privacy and secrecy and may completely rearrange living quarters to create privacy;
•uses hand signs while with friends and practices them at home;
•Or there is evidence of the appearance of:
A) Physical injury (such as being beaten) and then child lies about the events surrounding the injury.
B) Peculiar drawings or language on school books (may appear later as tattoos or brands)
C)Unexplained cash or goods, i.e., clothing or jewelry
D)Possible use of alcohol and drugs with attitude change.
Advise your children they should NOT
Associate with any gang members or “wannabe/gonnabe” gang members; identify or communicate with gangs; hang out near or where gangs congregate; approach strangers in cars who appear to want information or directions; wear gang related clothing where gangs are known to gather or traverse; wear initialed clothing such as BK – British Knights – a/k/a “Blood Killer” in high crime areas; use words like “crab” or “slob” (localized lingo may develop) anywhere gangs may be; i.e. malls, sporting events, etc.; attend any party or social event sponsored by gangs or their associates; take part in any graffiti activity or hang around where graffiti is present; or use any kind of finger or sign language in a public place.
Tips for Parents
•Impress upon your child the importance of school and good grades
•Spend quality time with your children
•Get involved in your child’s school activities
•Establish rules, set limits and be consistent, firm and fair in punishment
•Encourage good study habits
•Respect your child’s feelings and attitudes and help them develop self-esteem
•Watch closely for negative influences
•Improve your own self-esteem so your children can model themselves after the most important “role model” YOU.
Tips for Parents/Educators
Help children develop self control
Help children deal appropriately with problems
Get involved in community oriented prevention and intervention programs. Urge others to become involved. Volunteer at your child’s school. Gangs are a community problem and their influence does not stop at any particular boundary.
Listen to your children. Communicate with them about their concerns and fears.