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Bailey: We need more tattoos and less judgement

Editor’s Note: All opinion section content reflects the views of the individual author only and does not represent a stance taken by the Collegian or its editorial board. 

Everyone should get a tattoo, and everyone should stop judging those with tattoos.

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Tattoos are one of the ultimate versions of self-expression. They are turning your body into a living, breathing gallery. The point of that gallery is up to you. Tattoos can represent your passions, your goals, your milestones or any number of other things. Your tattoos, your body, your rules.

To be clear, everyone should get a well-researched, personally designed and meaningful tattoo. Granted, I’m not knocking party tats since they are a foundation of tattoo culture and many students’ college experiences. Tattoos help with body positivity, support local businesses and will hopefully change the superficial narrative many employers preach.

First, tattoos can help give you body confidence. When you get to decide what your body looks like on an aesthetic level, it makes you love it more. Many college students struggle with body positivity, so getting something that makes you happy looking in the mirror can be a big plus.

Getting tattoos also has the added bonus of letting you support local artists and their pursuit to stab people with needles. To be serious, though, there are tons of local artists in Fort Collins, and nothing feels better than spending your money on art. 

While many people love getting tattoos, not everyone thinks it’s such a good idea.

College students are always being warned by older generations that getting a tattoo is going to be the mark of death for hiring. To be fair, they have a point about face tattoos. Jobs don’t like them. For all other tattoos though, especially ones that go under clothes or are easily hideable, what’s their point?

Jobs shouldn’t care about tattoos that won’t affect their business. That barbed wire circle around some guy’s bicep probably doesn’t factor into his coding ability. It’s a superficial narrative that needs to change.

Everyone having a tattoo will change the culture of hiring and the expectations for other people’s bodies, and it will do it naturally by slipping tattoo culture into the mainstream.

Some tattoos are different — that’s true. People with swastika tattoos probably shouldn’t be hired, and judging that book by its cover might be warranted since they put a swastika on it. Typically, the concept of tattoos themselves don’t correlate to the quality of person.

It’s so hard to explain that to the majority of older generations, and while there is still hope that over time they’ll come to understand, a better plan is to think ahead.

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All young people should consider getting a tattoo. It doesn’t have to be big or public. It could be something as small as a little flower on your pinky toe or something big like a giant dragon sleeve. 

Whatever you choose doesn’t really matter to the overall idea. What matters is that we all consider getting one.

Everyone having a tattoo will change the culture of hiring and the expectations for other people’s bodies, and it will do it naturally by slipping tattoo culture into the mainstream.

If every current college student went out and got a tattoo, then 30 years from now, when we’re hiring the millennials’ grandkids, we’ll hire them not by the ink on their skin — but by the merit of their abilities.

No one is going to force anyone to get inked, but if you have any interest in getting a tattoo, then get one.

Fynn Bailey can be reached at letters@collegian.com or on Twitter @FynnBailey.

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