By Cherami Makimoto, Highlands Voice, Highlands Intermediate School
*School bathrooms BEWARE! Graffiti is coming for you! It’s not uncommon to find graffiti in school bathrooms. But, since the new B- building bathroom has opened, there has been one report of vandalism in the girls bathroom. Thankfully, it has been removed from the newly refurbished bathroom. However the thought is still there, will there be graffiti in these new bathrooms soon?
“Graffiti” is not a word people use everyday. However, it’s not that hard to find around campus. Colby Nakasone, an 8th grader on Ku I Ka Pono, said “most of the graffiti is in the bathrooms.” Fermin Guzman of Laulea, as well as an anonymous 8th grader, agrees with Colby that most of the bathrooms are vandalized. But the anonymous 8th grader says that there is also graffiti by the stairs. She also says that some classrooms get vandalized as well. The scribbles could be found on the tables/desks as well as the chairs.
*Graffiti is everywhere” Colby said. According to 3 of these Highlands students, they all agree that the graffiti in the bathrooms are inappropriate. Though they are unfitting, most are in sharpie or permanent marker. Being that graffiti is done in permanent ink, that makes it even harder to undo.
No one knows the real reason why people vandalize things. Yet, Fermin, Colby, and the anonymous 8th grader have one opinion in common. They all believe the reason why students graffiti all over the place is because they want to be cool or fit in. Colby says that if you want to fit in, you don’t have to adjust to what other people want, just be yourself. Fermin Guzman adds, they probably do it to express their feelings without anyone knowing who they are. Fermin says they probably do it because they are bored and have nothing to keep them from drawing on walls.
Graffitiing is a serious topic. According to Hawaii News Now, the state is making the parents responsible for their children’s actions. So, the parents or guardians of the person that is caught vandalizing public property will have to cover up the graffiti within 60 days (which includes the cost of the materials). However, if they’re arrested, they will be fined $50 and ordered to complete 80 hours of community service.
None of these students support the action of graffitiing. The 8th grader says that even though it looks nice, it’s still ugly. Colby also agrees because it’s on school grounds, not your own property. Fermin however doesn’t really mind graffiti. The thought of graffiti doesn’t phase him. Does graffiti phase you?
Photo provided by Highlands Voice
"Graffiti left by students mark the walls of the school's bathrooms."