Looting Soldiers

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The world-famous graffiti artist Banksy is no stranger to controversy. In fact, he seems to go where there is trouble or political unrest. Through his work, Banksy has a way of artfully criticizing the government, war, capitalism, racism, and a host of other issues on the table all over the world. So it was not surprising when Banksy took to the streets in New Orleans to commemorate the third anniversary of Hurricane Katrina with some powerful images.

When Hurricane Katrina made the city of New Orleans a disaster zone, there were some reports of looting. However, the media was criticized for exaggerating these reports, and also of being racist in their coverage of the so-called looting. Banksy’s looting soldiers piece points a critical and ironic finger at the government’s slow and poor response to the natural disaster with an image of two National Guard soldiers looting someone’s home and stealing electronics through the window. Banksy makes clever use of a real window and creates a mirror image of it to show a soldier sitting on the ledge with a TV in his arms, handing it to his partner.

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