November 30, 2022


Tattoos and Their Controversies

Tattoos are fun, new, and exhilarating for an 18 year old, but with older age tattoos may not be worth it. Some may say tattoos are not classy and they don’t belong in the workplace. Many business owners have a strong feeling against tattoos, “It is very specifically stated that any visible tattoos have to be covered up when on the floor… We serve the public, and we want to make sure that we project a proper image” (“Controversy Over Workplace Tattoos”). One may agree that tattoos, especially a lot of them, is correct attire. Others, however, believe that some tattoos are meaningful, and show meaning towards one thing in particular because of the size, shape, and intensity it may have. 

Very many of us can see the physical side of a tattoo, but unless we directly ask the person, we would not know the emotional side of it. The psychological part can really make you dislike tattoos. Some say, “She’s definitely a party girl…” (Karim), showing that being called a party girl can be very downgrading. This starts the controversy on tattoos. The controversy that comes with tattoos are quite extreme, but the meanings in tattoos in a personal aspect is much stronger than others opinions. For example, when someone gets a semicolon tattoo it states a message of, “affirmation and solidarity against suicide, depression, addiction, and other mental health issues” ( This one website, Project Semicolon, has also stated, “A semicolon is used when an author could’ve chosen to end their sentence, but chose not to. The author is you, and the sentence is your life” ( Project Semicolon made the reasoning behind such a simple tattoo so meaningful and that is because so many people in this world have had those dark thoughts or have known someone to have those thoughts. 

Tattoos have an abundance of meanings, whether or not one asks, there’s always a meaning behind them, and it is consciously or subconsciously known. Even though business owners oftentimes do not hire those who have tattoos, or ask them to be covered, the tattoos of meaning are still there for us. To some, tattoos are a perfect way to express oneself, but to others it is taken as a defiance. With ones so little as a semicolon to larger ones as a music verse, tattoos are a great way to show what you like. Tattoos are a message about yourself without the need to say a single word.

Works Cited

“The Meaning Behind a Semicolon Tattoo.” Grammarly blog, 22 May 2019.

Karim, Reef D.O. “Tattoo Psychology: Art or Self Destruction? Modern-Day Social Branding.” Huffpost, 9 January 2013.

“Controversy Over Workplace Tattoos Gets Nasty.” Workopolis, 4 June 2014.

“Semicolon Tattoo.”