Senseless Vandalism Strikes in Quiet Brisbane Suburb.

Vandalism in Australia.

“Youth is disintegrating. The youngsters of the land have a disrespect for their elders and a contempt for authority in every form. Vandalism is rife, and crime of all kinds is rampant among our young people. The nation is in peril.”

No, I haven’t just taken that from the editorial of a recent Australian national paper, it’s actually a quote from an Egyptian priest from around 4,000 years ago. Vandalism isn’t new.

But I have to say, we don’t get much of it around these parts. These parts being the western suburbs of Brisbane. But I did wake up on Sunday to this senseless act of mindless vandalism right in front of my house.

fan in a treeYes, somebody had found (who knows where) an old pedestal fan and put in a tree. With the discovery of this most heinous crime came flooding back the memories of a previous and most reprehensible offence from 9 March 2008.

That was about 2 1/2 years ago, again on a Sunday morning, when I awoke to discover this…..

Egg yolk on post box….and lying beneath it on the grass, the tell-tale evidence which I believe enabled me to unravel the nature of this crime…

Egg shell evidenceHere’s the conclusion I came to. It seems that somebody, I’m guessing a youth in a passing car, hurled an egg directly at my post box scoring an impressive hit. Or maybe I’m giving too much credit here for marksmanship; maybe they were walking past and scored a less than impressive hit from just 3 feet. Or 3 inches. Who knows?

Vandalism is here in Australia, of that there is no doubt. It is estimated that graffiti clean ups costs something like $250 million annually across all of Australia. In London, apparently it cost £100 million per year back in 2005, according to the BBC.

Back in England, I used to live opposite a park. Every Monday morning following the weekend, the children’s play area would be literally covered with broken glass. It seemed the act of drinking the beer/hooch/cider/whatever was not enough; it needed to be followed by the deliberate smashing of the bottle on the floor. Crazy.

That doesn’t seem to happen here; at least I’ve not seen it in any of the many parks around. Obviously I can’t speak for the whole of Australia, but it sure does seem that vandalism here is not as big a problem as it was back in the UK.

Right! I’m off to remove a fan from a tree.

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{ 6 comments… add one }
  • BobinOz September 4, 2010, 9:13 pm | Link

    Hmmm. Liverpool sounds wonderful, until you read the Liverpool City Council Annual Report 2007/08 which says under the title …

    2008 Quality of Life survey

    Anti-social behaviour:
    • Issues most commonly identified as a problem were: ‘people using or dealing drugs’ (67%), ‘teenagers hanging around in the streets’ (65%) and ‘vandalism, graffiti and other
    deliberate damage to property or vehicles’ (56%). These were the same issues identified in the 2007 survey.
    • A greater number of residents in Alt Valley described these issues as a problem than in other neighbourhood areas.
    • During the previous 12 months 61% of people stated that they have experienced teenagers hanging around in the streets, 54% had experienced rubbish or litter lying around and 41% had been a victim of vandalism.

    Good ol’ Google, never lets you down.

  • JOHN WILKES September 2, 2010, 5:35 am | Link

    Bob, I didn’t pick Melbourne , that’s what I saw. I also used the plural ‘ trains’ and have been back to OZ on a number of occasions. However , prior to my blog , I checked out the current situation and it seems that the cost of vandalism in Australia has increased 500% in the past decade. I’d also heard that the Melbourne line I used still has the third worst record when it comes to vandalism : so little change there then . I’d pick Merseyrail everytime were even putting feet on seats is regarded as ‘ anti- social ‘.

  • BobinOz September 2, 2010, 12:41 am | Link

    John, given how well travelled you are, I’m surprised you pick Melbourne as the place you saw your worst ever vandalism. Back here in Brisbane though, and I am quoting our Lord Mayor Campbell Newman here, “While council doesn’t mind commissioned art, we believe that illegal graffiti makes people feel uncomfortable and unsafe and we are committed to tackling this form of vandalism. Since October, the joint Brisbane City Council and Queensland Police Service task force against graffiti has charged 127 offenders with 3989 offences. Over the same period our 12 graffiti clean up crews have removed a whopping 212,000 m² of offensive material.”

    He said that in April earlier this year, so by now I’m sure they have charged even more offenders with even more offences and cleaned up even more square metres. I’m also guessing that the Melbourne Council have cleaned up that train you mentioned.

    Most of those country signs have been sorted out now too. I saw one or two dents in one or two signs back in 2002 when I first visited this country, but have not seen one since. Certainly not since I’ve moved out here. Maybe you should take another look at Australia? It’s probably changed quite a bit since you last came.

  • BobinOz September 2, 2010, 12:39 am | Link

    Beaut Chris, my kind of humour.

  • JOHN WILKES August 31, 2010, 7:19 pm | Link

    I’ve heard that quote before from somewhere. Always thought it was a bit of a mis-quote though as the Vandals that sacked Rome didn’t arrive until about 2500 years later. The worst vandalism I ever came across was while traveling on Melbournes trains.Every carriage was completely covered in ‘Art’ as was every wall along the track all the way to Eltham. The powers that be in Melbourne have to some extent reduce the problem by re-classifying it as ‘Street Art’. I wonder how they might re-classify all the country signs that had been used as target practice .

  • Chris August 31, 2010, 3:43 am | Link

    Crist if ya treat ya fans like that i wouldn’t want to be your enemy

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