WootBot


quality posts: 15 Private Messages WootBot

Staff

Kid with tattoo

Oh boy. So a mom in North Carolina was recently arrested for tattooing the outline of a small heart on her 11-year-old daughter's shoulder.

"She asked me to do it," said 30-year-old Odessa Clay, a part-time tattoo artist.

Oh, well in that case ...

Seriously, though. I am not anti-tattoo. I think tattooing is an art and a form of creative expression. But shouldn't it go without saying that, as a parent, we have a responsibility to keep our children from doing things they might regret 5, 10, 30 years down the road? Much less encouraging or even actively participating in the behavior?

To play devil's advocate, though, one user comment on this story struck me as very interesting.

While I don't like tattoos, I think arresting a parent for letting a child get a small tattoo is ridiculous. I've worked in social services and seen parents neglecting, abusing, harassing, starving, imprisoning their children. These parents don't always get arrested. They get "guidance" from social workers and if they persist, then get arrested. (I don't agree with the system, just stating it like it is). Why not give "guidance" to the parents who allow tattoos and arrest parents who are neglecting, abusing, etc. their children? This is one screwed up society.

Some good points in there. Was it really THAT big a deal, considering there are children being beaten, starved and neglected by their parents?

Is it possible to create a sliding scale of abuse under the law? "This is sort of kind of maybe detrimental, but THIS is REALLY abusive." At what point do we remove a parent's right to judge what is or is not appropriate for their child?

Photo by Flickr member GerryT, used under a Creative Commons License.

Sparkstalker


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Sparkstalker

I've got to ask - what's the difference between this, and having a kid get their ears pierced? At least the daughter was 11 (capable of making a semi-rational decision), and asked for it to be done. I've seen lots of babies that can't even talk with pierced ears...it's not like they could ask for it to be done.

amynance


quality posts: 6 Private Messages amynance

Staff

Sparkstalker wrote:I've got to ask - what's the difference between this, and having a kid get their ears pierced? At least the daughter was 11 (capable of making a semi-rational decision), and asked for it to be done. I've seen lots of babies that can't even talk with pierced ears...it's not like they could ask for it to be done.



That's a perfect example, and a good question. The only possible argument I can see is, one heals while the other is permanent? I don't know.

renee5774


quality posts: 0 Private Messages renee5774

I agree that parents who are neglecting/abusing their kids need to pay a stiffer penalty right from the start. However, I have to wonder, if this mother does whatever her daughter asks is she really going to be a responsible parent and who's to say she isn't one of the neglectful abusive parents as well. Just something I wonder.

Sparkstalker


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Sparkstalker
renee5774 wrote:I agree that parents who are neglecting/abusing their kids need to pay a stiffer penalty right from the start. However, I have to wonder, if this mother does whatever her daughter asks is she really going to be a responsible parent and who's to say she isn't one of the neglectful abusive parents as well. Just something I wonder.



But Renee - who's to say she is? We have no evidence of that, nor do we have any evidence that she does whatever her daughter asks. We just know that the mother agreed to do the tattoo on her shoulder. For all we know, she could have only agreed to do it if her daughter brought home straight A's on her report card.

And on a side note, why is it that when I read any comments on a Yahoo news story I lose all faith in humanity?

heatholliday


quality posts: 1 Private Messages heatholliday

I think it was silly for the mother to agree to do this. Tattos are seen by our socity differently compaired to pierced ears. Of course I also think jail time is an overraction. There are far worse things being done to children than inking a small heart on the arm of a kid.

FatNGristle


quality posts: 1 Private Messages FatNGristle

How responsible the mother's choice was isn't for me to judge. What is for me to judge is what the heck business is it of the government's how she raises her kid??
The gov't is complicit in so many things that are harmful to us, it should have NO SAY in parenting.
IMhO

"All my life I've been an obese man trapped inside a fat man's body" H.S.

chennai8


quality posts: 2 Private Messages chennai8

I am not against tattoos. But homemade tattoos usually are not safe. That's why state has to certify the facility. Little children have high probability of contracting disease from the unsafe equipment or ink. Arresting a parent is not cool tho.

neyfam2000 wrote:Woot!--going from "Deal-a-day" to "Site-a-day"

matthew


quality posts: 20 Private Messages matthew
FatNGristle wrote:what the heck business is it of the government's how she raises her kid??
The gov't is complicit in so many things that are harmful to us, it should have NO SAY in parenting.



Yeah, when the nanny state butts in to protect the most vulnerable members of society from violence, abuse, and exploitation, that really burns me up, too. What ever happened to freedom, right?

johnweideman


quality posts: 0 Private Messages johnweideman

Tattoos represent an inability to imagine a time when you might not want one. Ultimately, they spring from insecurity and need for approval from others, despite the desperate claims of "I did this for myself". Yeah, thats why people who get tattoos never show them off.
As far as the kid in the picture is concerned, he is in more danger from the bottle of gin his parents left on the counter.

lnakin1


quality posts: 0 Private Messages lnakin1

I do not think tattoos or piercings are appropriate for young children. Any permanent alteration of the body which is not medically necessary should not take place until the child is old enough to make that decision and I think 18 to 21 is an appropriate age.
Ear piercing with one small hole in each ear would be, in my opinion, the exception. Even then, this should only take place when the child, not the adult, wants the piercing.

As a teacher, I am horrified to see a 5 year old come to school with his/her nose or lip pierced, or with multiple ear piercings or ear stretching. I have seen infants with several piercings in each ear and, although society accepts this, unlike when I was growing up, I do not think it is appropriate for an adult to make this decision for a child.
There are situations where, even as an adult, these body alterations could negatively influence employment options and even ones' status in society.
As an educator, we teach children that they can be anything they want to be, but, sadly, looks do play a part.
When hiring for a professional position, I feel sure that someone with visible tattooing or
numerous piercings would not be considered as readily as someone without them.
Also, what is cute when you are 16 is often not so cute when you want to make a good impression at an older age. Even at 21, the same thing applies.
The young child who wanted a tattoo, never, I am sure, anticipated the pain associated with it. Most children and many adults, dread a nurse giving them a shot. I am sure the pain associated with a tattoo would be much worse and, in my opinion, IS a form of child abuse, considering that it is causing unnecessary pain for the child.
As parents and adults, we should never do anything medically unnecessary to our children, that WE think is really cool. Let them grow up and make the decision since they are the ones who will have to live with it. Buy removable tattoos, if you feel your child must have one. No pain is involved and the child would enjoy being able to pick them out and change them.

thumperchick


quality posts: 244 Private Messages thumperchick

Jail time is an overreaction. I would agree that her tattoo license should be suspended and put under review, perhaps a few parenting classes that focus on adolescent development and decision making could help.

Making a permanent physical change to your body on a whim at 11 years old - that's the type of thing your parents are supposed to stop you from doing and provide guidance.