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Treat your body like a Temple: Body art and Self-Expression

Painters paint, singers sing; tattoos are just another form of self-expression. Tattoos are nothing new to society. Tattoos date as far back as ancient Egypt, if not earlier.

Everything in society can be used for self-expression. Hairstyles, clothing, jewelry, and even cars are used to reflect our personalities. These items are temporary though, while tattoos are a permanent addition to our bodies.

Ancient Rome used tattoos to mark criminals and slaves to set them apart from society. Today, tattoos are still used to set us apart from the norm. They want to mark themselves in a way that makes them unique in this world.

Society has become more tolerant of tattoos in recent years. Older generations consider tattoos a completely taboo subject that marks the wearer as either a criminal or unable to find a job at the very least.

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Parents may disapprove of their children getting tattoos, and worry that they will be unable to get a job because of the nature and position of the tattoo. Parents worry that their children are making life more difficult by getting tattoos.

People thinking about getting one should take the time to consider the fact that whatever design they choose will be on their body forever, unless they have the tattoo professionally removed. But removal is expensive and painful.

Tattoos can be a meaningful addition to someone’s personality, but they should never be a spur-of-the-moment action. Many people have decided to get tattoos while intoxicated and regret it for the rest of their lives.

But tattoos can be deeply personal and symbolize important moments in someone’s life. Several staff members have tattoos, and each of them stand for something important in the bearer’s life.

“My Tinkerbell tattoo is the most important to me, because it is a reminder that with faith and pixie dust I can get through anything,” Editor-in-Chief Bradley Giuranna said.

Tattoos are a constant reminder to the bearer and to their surrounding community. People with tattoos think a little differently than others. They are not afraid to show their feelings and expose their personality for all to see.

Safety is a major concern when deciding to get a tattoo, or making any drastic change to the body. People considering tattoos should research different parlors to find the safest place with the best work.

Tattoo parlors often have websites that showcase their artists’ work. People considering tattoos should definitely meet the tattoo artist before actually getting the tattoo. You should be familiar with the person who will be sticking a needle into your skin.

Become familiar with the tattoo artist and discuss the design you want. This design is going to be on your body forever, so make sure you are happy with the way it looks.

It is important to plan out your tattoo, but sometimes they can just happen. “I actually went in to get a piercing, but I saw the design and it reminded me of a short story I wrote. It’s kind of ironic, but I didn’t just get it because it’s pretty,” Ashley Palm, a senior and the news editor of The Snapper, said.

While Palm was fortunate in the choice of her tattoo design in that she has not regretted it, others are not so lucky. Many people get caught up in the rush and excitement of the idea of a tattoo, and later regret it once the excitement wears off.

“I spent over a year planning each tattoo to figure out exactly what I wanted. I planned my tattoos out to be meaningful to me, and I have never regretted them. They mean freedom to me,” Courtney Anderson, a senior, said.

The freedom and expression of tattoos may interfere in other parts of life. Many employers do not consider tattoos to be professional. Employers may require all tattoos to be covered by clothing or otherwise concealed.

So when getting a tattoo, consider the ramifications and your future career. A more conservative employer may choose a less qualified applicant over someone with tattoos. So when considering a position, take the personality of the employer into account and act accordingly.