"It'll look terrible when you're older!" "It's so trashy!" "I'm disappointed that your parents let you." "You'll never get a job." "You don't need them to be pretty." "Why can't you just accept the way you naturally look?" "Only prostitutes have tattoos."
Every single one of these things people have told me after they either saw or it came up in conversation that I have two tattoos (and want more) and have pierced my nose and a hoop in my left cartilage. Yep. Every single one of those. Pretty rude, right?
Stop judging people with tattoos. Some ink or some metal in or on someone's body does not effect you. Crazy isn't it? Their decision to put ink on their skin or a piercing in their skin does not effect your life in any way. It neither hurts nor helps you.
You might not like the way it looks, but you know what, I don't really like the way you still style your hair like it's 1985. You many think my tattoos and piercings are "trashy," but your white socks with your white sneakers and pleated pants are actually just a straight abomination. You don't hear me saying anything about your hair or your pants because I know that you like them. You keep your 1985 hair and pleated pants and I'll keep some ink that has important meaning to me.
Contrary to what people told me, I actually do have a job. At this restaurant, some of my co-workers have piercings and visible tattoos and neither prevent them from doing their job. Our boss is a really great, personable guy (he doesn't have tattoos or piercings) who realizes that ink or piercings have no affect on a person's ability to work. Having tattoos and piercings is not unprofessional, someone judging them and assuming they cannot perform equally because of these piercings and tattoos is unprofessional.
Stop being so afraid of what is different. It's just some ink or a piece of metal or plastic. I like the way I look. I think tattoos and piercings are cool because they are some of the few things we actually can choose about our appearances. Also, both of my tattoos have extremely important meanings to me. When you choose to insult a drawing on my hip, know that you are insulting the drawer, my sister, a seventeen-year-old girl who is severely developmentally disabled and suffers from epilepsy. When you insult a simple line that is a skyline on a good friend's foot, know that you are insulting her hometown and all of the people who call that city home.
I understand that you grew up in a different time, or have different religious views or simply don't want them. But those are terrible reason to be a dickhead to someone.
My tattoos and piercings are mine, just like David Beckham's are his, Angelina Jolie's are her own and Harry Styles' are his own. The pictures that are on our body mean something to us. Do not fear the different and unknown. Learn more about it and realize that a bit of ink and metal do not change who I am as a person.