I get sent about a billion story pitches a day, almost none of which even get opened, but this one caught my eye, from a website I’d never heard of called Ratter. For the more sensitive, I should warn you that this story involves an F-bomb pretty prominently, so click at your own risk. The story, as it goes, is that a prominent NYC graffiti artist known as VEW tagged an infamous subway location with a huge (and, might I say, very well done) anti-ISIS mural:
A New York City-based graffiti writer recently created a massive Star Wars-themed mural in an abandoned Manhattan subway station, blasting international terrorist organization ISIS. The twenty-something artist, known only as VEW, spelled out “F*** ISIS” in highly stylized letters that were fashioned to look like the film’s iconic font aside a Jawa character wielding a lightsaber.
“It’s a propaganda war and our side needs to step up its game,” explained VEW about the piece that’s located at the same off-limits platform that was used a few days earlier by the NYPD for its highly publicized “terror drills.”
I’m not going to include a picture of the mural here for fairly obvious reasons but you all should click on over and take a look.
There’s an important point to be made here about this guy’s work. I don’t know this guy VEW or anything about him, but I would guess he’s probably politically either a leftist or an anarchist, just based on his hobby. Most of these guys are. But here he is, showing that he understands something about ISIS that the President – and many prominent liberals – are missing.
ISIS represents a threat to our entire way of life and the freedoms that we all – right and left – cherish. And their weapons are not exclusively (or even mostly) bullets, bombs, RPGs, or suicide vests. ISIS takes their propaganda very seriously and does it well, to the point that they have been astonishingly successful in recruiting from deep within Western civilization. They are constantly at work not only militarily but also selling people that they can offer meaning to their lives – something people can latch onto as we drift aimlessly through our postmodern lives.
Our national leadership and entertainment industry, meanwhile, mostly offer silence, boring platitudes, or mincing apology in response. Compare the modern state of American entertainment to the state of American entertainment in World War 2. In that time period, every movie studio in America understood that America faced existential threats and did everything in their power to foster national pride and reinforce the importance of defeating America’s enemies for the sake of all that America holds dear.
Nowadays, extending a giant middle finger to the enemies of America is either conservative or countercultural.
It’s sad and depressing, to think how much right and left in America both have to lose from ISIS, and how unified we could become, if our national leaders for the most part did not appear bored and disinterested in speaking clearly about the problem it presents.
This guy, this VEW, did not need to offer a rambling oratory full of precatory throat clearing or apology to non-violent Muslims, to make his point. He needed two words, the first and only two words that are needed to begin a discussion about ISIS – the first one of course being the F-bomb.
Sad that a graffiti artist is more capable of carrying and conveying the message that needs conveying in a powerful way than the President of the United States. But maybe also there’s some hope that countercultural America is waking up and will at last wake up our national will with it.