Friday, June 1, 2012

And the band plays on...the Great Gaffiti Debate...


I hope this turns out well...

No one will be able to stand before eternity's final bar and say, "So and so made me do it." Some yutz made a conscious decision to go out and vandalize something, already knowing full well that it's wrong. That society has accepted the idea that outside forces motivate an individual's actions only gives the offender a guilt free pass to go out and do more...after all, it ultimately isn't his fault, it's those miscreants at the train club down the street that made him do it, right?

My putting a bar on my layout does not mean I condone the drinking that led some drunk to hit the road last night and kill a family of five just up the road from my house. My putting a nude of a girl swimming does not mean I condone the adultery that led to two divorces I know of.*** The tank cars I model carry the same chemicals used to make crystal meth in some wannabe chemist's lab. Does my modeling fire hydrants mean I condone the actions of the arsonist that necessitates their presence in my neighborhood?

How many have hobos on their layout? Do you understand that they used to light their fires with grease stolen from the journal boxes on the trucks? This often robbed wheelsets of important lubricant which, if not spotted in time, would lead to a hot box, which would then lead to sheared axles, the resulting derailments costing untold thousands in damages, fires and even the loss of life? Their graffiti was and is a road map of suckers willing to cater to their panhandling.

I model what appeals to my sense of reality because it enhances my models. My N scale reflects a tinplate heritage, my HO goes two ways, collector model and scenicked realism. That other people enjoy my work is a plus but not a driving force. I lose no sleep over those who may be offended...there's always plenty, no matter the topic. Our national motto should be changed from "E Pluribus Unum" to "Perpetuo Offensus Ad Infinitum".

Don't get me wrong, watching one's work get destroyed on a daily basis is something I too have to deal with. It plainly sucks eggs. I deal with graffiti and vandalism every day making my rounds. Sometimes my job requires carrying a ballistic clipboard. Take a ride with me and you might understand why I have little patience for self-righteous indignation. But I've long ago learned to separate my modeling from what I work with. I own the cars, I "tag" the cars so therefore I accept full responsibility for damaging railroad property and regularly sentence myself to community service cleaning the railroad shops (read that: clean the workbench).

***BTW, my removing these elements from my layout was more in keeping with Godly virtue in that I did not want a weaker brother or sister to stumble at a liberty I have, something much more pleasing to Christ.

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