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Tattoos In The Workplace And Personal Experience Having Tattoos

1040 words - 5 pages

Having four tattoos, three piercings and hopefully more to come, it's hard for me to grasp the fact that the workplace discriminates against people who have them. The tattoo on my shoulder is for my twin brother, the two on my right foot are for my grandma and best friend, and the one on my collarbone is my favorite quote. Each of my tattoos has meaning, and my piercings are not meant to offend anyone. I am not alone. Several years ago Jon Tevlin, staff writer for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis noted the number of adults with tattoos was "growing, especially among the young"(Tevlin). I don’t believe businesses should discriminate against people with tattoos and piercings because it is our personal choice to have them; the tattoos people get have meaning to them; and no one has the right to judge others based on their tattoos and piercings.
Many people have tattoos and piercings in today's society. According to Tattoo Statistics, 36 percent of U.S. adults between ages 18-25 have at least one tattoo, and the average annual amount spent on tattoos in the U.S is $1.65 billion. However, job discrimination against people with tattoos and piercings has been happening for a long time, and it is legal to do so. In fact, Jay P. Whickson, a writer from Demand Media, noted many employers legally discriminate against those with tattoos. My thought on that is why? Whickson stated that in most cases, the employer isn't against body art; he simply doesn't want it to reflect on his business. So, tattoos and piercings make businesses look bad? Unprofessional?
Tattoos are a form of art, a form of expression about one’s self. The world is very diverse. We have different races, ethnicities, believe in different religions, enjoy different sports, but we are expected to not show our tattoos because they make us look as if we are "bad people"? Stacy Scapeccia, day kitchen manager at Pizza Luce, who has a lip ring, nose ring, red-streaked hair, and a large black star tattooed on her wrist, told Tevlin it's as much a lifestyle as a style choice. "'It's all about freedom of expression,"' she said. "'This is who I am."'(Tevlin).
Ever since I was little I was told not to judge a book by its cover. Doesn't that saying go for people in everyday society? I would think so. In reality, it's hard not to judge someone based on his or her image, and I believe that is why people who have tattoos and piercings are more prone to getting judged. Someone with tattoos and piercings is going to get talked about more than someone without them, simply because they are conversation starters for many people. That said, many people who have tattoos and piercings are considered "rebellious".
Previous research conducted within a study pointed out tattoos were indicators of engagement in deviant behaviors (Aizenman & Jensen, 2007; Durkin & Houghton, 2000). Other research concluded tattoos were seen as social stigmas (Sanders, 1988) (Mun' et al., 144). Yes, in the past tattoos and deviant...

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