In the age of Facebook and Twitter, a new crime has hit America: "Sharpie parties," gatherings of revelers armed with "Sharpie" magic markers and lured by social media invitations to wreak havoc on foreclosed homes.
Five years into the U.S. foreclosure crisis, Sharpie parties are a new form of blight on the landscape of boarded-up homes, brown lawns and abandoned streets. They are also the latest iteration of collective home-trashing spurred by social media.
At least six Sharpie parties were reported in one California county in recent months, where invitations posted online drew scores to foreclosed homes.
The partygoers are handed Sharpie pens on arrival by their hosts and urged to graffiti the walls - a destructive binge that often prompts other acts of vandalism, including smashing holes in walls and doors, flooding bathrooms and ripping up floors.
If revenge on the banks is the motive, does anyone think the banks really care? They make their money no matter what, that's how they stay rich and powerful, they designed the system to work that way.
Those of us fighting to change the system, and hoping to see crooked bankers punished for things like mortgage fraud will have a more difficult time doing that if we're all looked upon as criminals or potential criminals. Please, think beyond yourself, and remember that there are families still fighting to keep their homes.
Oh, and what happened to the geniuses who destroyed the home in the video? Facebook (They used the site to send out invites, and then posted photos of party.) turned over everything in the accounts of the party "hosts" and they're all facing multiple felony charges.