The Roman Colosseum, or Coliseum, as it’s also spelled, is one of the greatest monuments to world history still in existence, but apparently, it’s also a great place to carve your initials and take selfies with the defacement.
That’s at least what two female tourists from California thought when they carved the initials J and N onto part of the ancient brick and then posed for selfies, Italian publication La Stampa reports.
The girls were not mentioned by name, but they were described as being 21- and 25-years-old. According to the site translation, the girls were spotted vandalizing the Colosseum by some outraged tourists, who called security officers.
This, in turn, immediately tripped the alarm to the Piazza Dante police station. The tourists were accused of “aggravated damage on a building of historical and artistic interest.” The letters were described as being about eight inches tall. They are now forever etched into a brick on one of the first floor walls. You can see them in the image above, slightly left-of-center.
The tourists were said to be “in the company” of Piazza Dante police shortly after the infraction, which occurred at approximately 10:30 a.m.
According to reports from the scene, they “apologized for what they did,” adding, “We regret it, but we did not imagine it was something so serious. We’ll remember for a lifetime.”
BuzzFeed commenters lambasted the girls for their actions.
“It’s an ancient monument, and you didn’t think it was serious?” Colleen Sweeney questioned. “Good lord.”
“You have got to be f***ing kidding me,” blasted Kayde Puckett. “‘We did not imagine it was something so serious’!? Stop it. It’s the f***ing Colosseum. Please just stop.”
“Honestly, doesn’t even matter what it is,” added commenter Bryan Wilson. “Carving your name into s**t is stupid, and immature. These people should go spend some time in jail, or face a huge fine. People need to learn that it’s not ok to just deface stuff.”
Some accused the girls of being “typical Americans,” but that does not excuse prior instances of Colosseum graffiti, which occurred from a 42-year-old Russian man in 2014, a 15-year-old boy from Canada, and a 12-year-old boy, who was held up by his father so he could deface the ancient location.
In other words, it’s not just the U.S., but the girls certainly didn’t do the country any favors.
Do you think what Wilson said is correct? Should people face jail time or “huge fines” for doing what the girls from California did, or is that going too far?