I’m thankful for beautiful and clean cities. Venice (Venezia) Italy is a land of rich history and worthy of “respect”. This is the social marketing message I got from the people working, living, or visiting there in my short visit, as they also have a more visible campaign #RESPECT ENJOY VENICE . I was thankful to see the main square area as in a few days it completely flooded likely due to the rain and the Cruise ships allowed in which change the water volume in the old city canals — we made it through the forthcoming flood but several did not ironically the week we left. It was certainly an “experience” and the children had fun as all in rainbow colored plastic galoshes patiently lined up to ‘walk the plank’ across San Marco square.
As we also took a different direction to less water filled stores and restaurants it occured to me how civilized everyone was. I also observed very little trash and no huge problem with vandalistic graffiti like tagging which plagues most cities today.
We cannot deal with more vandalism, especially ‘dirty tagging’ as this contributes to our uneasiness, there is proof that once one negative event happens another one is right behind hence the Broken Window Syndrome (see theory). So why are so many people doing this in other cities and countries where they are visiting? Is it due to lack of empathy or intended damage (due to jealousy of the respected city or town history)? Perhaps all graffiti artists need to ban together to develop a new ‘ethos’ of informing and discussing with younger generations to come.
Would people like the Colosseum full of multi-colored tags? The White House and surroundings monuments? How about St. Petersburg? The Greek isles, or on the off-white color of the Acropolis (it was bad enough that pieces of it were taken away by Lord Elgen himself to ‘whiten’ the stone thus ruining the natural color of the rock and marble)?!
Do people have any idea of how many months and years of hard labor (albeit most was indeed ‘slave’ labor) it took to create these masterpieces? Do people know the true reasons why “Venice” was created in the first place? Basically to avoid being sacked and completely vandalized/destroyed as their mainland was during the barbarian invasions. Can and should continents like Europe do something about the issue and ban together? Maybe create a good social marketing campaign or practically a type of coding of spray cans (similar to gun monitoring “aimed” to better control) so that we can trace back vandals….. People are poor enough, have hardships enough, they cannot bear to pay taxes to ‘fix’ their personal property let alone public property, especially to clean up streets and monuments. This is part of our community health literacy to be responsible citizens and visitors.
Let’s ask for RESPECT of all cities and great historical monuments around the globe. Let’s be THANKFUL for their existence, and for those who maintain them including taxpayers, city planners, cleaners and artisans everywhere!
Seeing the beauty and reading up on history was the basic inspiration of this poem:
Vivaldi played his seasons four
Now Gondoliers paddle to shore
San Marco, Giorgio, and Theodore
So many in Venezia.
For all her glory and her pain
Of wondrous knights for faith doth slain
The mists remain on stones of goth
She sinks inside, the days of sloth
The city of Venezia.