Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Graffiti #11: Take The Skinheads Bowling

Today's graffiti comes from an alleyway in Kiev near the hostel we are staying at.  It reminds me of the power that a symbol has against plain text. Spray paint a swastika on the alleyway and it would be much more intimidating than writing that this wall seems to be owned by "skinhead."  In fact, this made me smile and think about the great Camper Van Beethoven song "Take the Skinhead's Bowling." 

In my free time I've been re-watching All in the Family and really enjoying them.  Certainly some of the episodes are clearly very, very dated and are borderline ridiculous today but many of them have new found meaning when I listen to anti-Obama arguments that have their roots in racism.  Nearly all of Archie Bunker's problems are centered with his frustration trying to be successful in society with his limited education and if the show had been set during a Democratic's president's term [rather than during Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford's administration's] I think a lot of the jokes would resemble the Tea Party today.

In a season 3 episode called "Archie Is Branded," the Bunker house has a swastika painted on the front door because their address is confused with one of a outspoken Jewish activist.  It is one of the best episodes they ever did and at the surprising conclusion I wish they would have been able to continue the story line beyond just one episode.  You can watch the episode below to see the power a symbol can have:

Part 1:

Part 2:

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