Our opinion: Put the spray paint down

Published 6:30 am Saturday, June 19, 2021

Last week, it was reported that a rash of graffiti had popped up across town, which tagged an assortment of buildings and pieces of city property.

Since then, a 17-year-old teen had turned himself in in connection with the case explaining that he had felt bad about what he had done after seeing posts online.

While we commend the teen for taking responsibility for his actions, it doesn’t take away from the tremendous price tag that follows, turning into an expensive life lesson.

The APD took reports of damage to various structures, including an estimated $15,000 worth of damage to the Wescott Athletic Sports Complex Dome. Other reports of building damage include:

• Damage in the women’s bathroom at the Veteran’s Pavilion;

• Destruction of three lights at the Roosevelt Bridge;

• Rocks thrown through the front porch window of a residence in the 1100 block of Fourth Avenue Northwest;

• Graffiti on the roof of the pavilion at Lions Park featuring a smiley face and the phrase “smile peanut”; and

• Graffiti on the Austin Municipal Pool building featuring a smiley face and the phrase “we got this.”

Not all of these are connected to the same case, but it’s still worth reminding people that vandalism of this or any other sort only reflects negatively on the community.

Putting aside for the time being that it’s illegal, spreading this kind of vandalism is nothing short of classless and baseless.

We hope that we have seen the last of this, but realistically, there will always be people out there who can’t see past their own selfishness.

Luckily, Austin has a variety of community organizations who are willing to step up and try to counter these kinds of things through beautification projects, showing that there is a stronger need for giving Austin an attractive face, rather than those who armed with a can of spray paint having nothing better to do.

Take pride in your community. You are not the only one living here.