Helen Frankenthaler’s The Bay is an abstract painting on display in the Detroit Institute of Arts. It’s valuable. This work of art is worth about 1.5 million dollars. Or I should say it used to be worth 1.5 million dollars, until a 12 year old boy on a field trip decided to put his gum on the painting. The gum left a stain the size of a quarter on the painting. The boy was suspended from school and disciplined by his parents.
Following his suspension, Julie Kildee, the director of the boy’s charter school, said, "Even though we give very strict guidelines on proper behavior and we hold students to high standards, he is only 12 and I don’t think he understood the ramifications of what he did before it happened, but he certainly understands the severity of it now." Where the boy once saw something equivalent to the underside of a cafeteria table, he now sees a valuable piece of art. W
e don’t always understand the ramifications of what we do to our lives because we don’t always understand how valuable we really are.
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