The other day I was cleaning up graffiti; not graffiti art you would admire, but more like vandalism on the school’s property. The first piece of graffiti I came across was a penis. I had a bit of a laugh because someone drew a penis on the wall.
But shortly after started to notice, that most of the graffiti around the school I was scrubbing off; were penises!! There were penises everywhere!! And I could also tell that different people graffitied the penises on; due to their art skills and style of penis. Then I realized this wasn’t the first time I saw penises graffitied; I had seen penises graffitied everywhere, even on the North Shore!!
Someone once told me (I can’t remember who), that graffiti is a personal expression; as a cry for help, trying to seeking affirmation about themselves or a longing to connect to someone. And these are some reasons they graffiti.
As I am scrubbing away the graffiti I’m wondering;
What is a person trying to express when they graffiti a penis?
What is their cry for help?
What are they trying to seek affirmation about?
Who are they longing to connect with?
Is it a cry for help because they lack male presence in their life?
Are they trying to seek affirmation about their own masculinity?
Are they longing to connect with a male role model?
The truth is: I don’t know.
But on the other side of the coin;
Tyler Durden from the movie ‘Fight club’ said something profound;
“We’re a generation of men raised by women.”
And as I look around this is becoming a common story.
I see a lack of male presence in a young person’s life; whether physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually.
I see young males constantly trying to find ways to seek affirmation about their own masculinity.
I see young males longing to connect with a male role model.
Maybe Tyler Durden is right.
As I cleaned my last graffitied penis on the wall,
A young person came along with the music on his phone blasting Tupac’s song; keep ya head up.
And ironically just as he walked past, the lyrics went;
“Will the real men get up?”
And maybe Tupac is right;
Maybe this is the answer to fix the lack of male presence in a young person’s life, guide and affirm young males’ masculinity and to quench the longing to have a male role model.
Maybe we will have a lot less penises graffitied everywhere.
So the next time I see a penis graffitied on the wall;
I am going to treat this like the Bat sign, when Batman gets called for help;
Like a person’s call for help; a call for male role models or figures in their life.