Give a man a fish, and you’ll feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you’ve fed him for a lifetime.
So goes the ancient adage. The new one at the women’s state prison in Concord might be: Give a woman a paintbrush and she might learn a trade. Teach her how to spray-paint graffiti, and you’ve got bigger problems.
That’s what is set to start this week, with a Nashua graffiti artist teaching spray-paint graffiti techniques to the inmates. Oh, and it’s paid for by you, the taxpayer.
Granted, the teacher is with something called “Positive Street Art.” We are reasonably sure that he won’t be showing the ladies how to do street-gang symbols, at least not on the murals that will be sprayed on the walls of two prison yards.
But anyone who drives around Manchester or Nashua, particularly on the beltways, is familiar with graffiti that doesn’t quite fit with the “therapeutic and calming space,” the Department of Corrections claims will result from this class.
“Art therapy is the best therapy,” says one inmate of the $75,000 program. The release didn’t say what “Nicole” is in for. But where do the taxpayers sign up for a little therapy to talk them down from the rafters?