Out getting a coffee, a breezy tank top and a pair of shorts, I felt adorable; all my tattoos could be seen, and why should this be a problem, they’re mine aren’t they? Some people look and ask what they mean, why I got them. But you always have at least one who looks at you with disgust, their nose crinkling, eyes squinting and mouth curling into an ugly sneer because: How dare you show something so hideous and wrong? And why?

What is the issue with tattoos? What is so wrong about getting a little ink to commemorate something of importance to you? Or maybe a lot of ink just because you feel like it? Why is this such a big taboo in society?

Tattoos are incredibly common in today’s culture; they have been around for centuries; they celebrate life, an accomplishment, in memory of a loved one, a personal message to yourself. Sometimes, it’s nothing other than something that looks beautiful or badass to you. It’s an expression, something deemed important enough to have it permanently (for the most part) marked into your skin.

If tattoos weren’t on skin, if they were painted or drawn on paper they would be considered masterpieces – maybe not all of them, for everyone has different tastes – but people wouldn’t be so quick to judge.

Paper or skin, sketchbooks or bodies – why is there such admiration and appreciation for one and disgust and anger at the other?

It’s understandable if tattoos are not for you, if you yourself would never get one. Of course, that’s alright; that’s a personal choice. Just as it’s a personal choice to go through with it and get one. What is not a personal choice, nor a personal preference, is being ignorant to others because of their personal choices.

Respect people’s choices. Respect what they have done as a personal choice. It’s not an affront to you – it’s not a sin, it’s not a taboo, it’s just art. Bodies are temples. How other people decorate theirs is not your business.

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