Martin Luther King Jr. Tattoos
12:15 PM
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Tattoos (left to right) by Joshua Carlton, Mike DeMasi, and Logan Aguilar.

Every year on this US holiday, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, I scour the internet to find tattoo tributes to the civil rights leader. And every year, I'm disappointed that there aren't more.

Instead, I'm finding many celebrations of imbecility like the massive coverage of Gucci Mane's ice cream cone facial tattoo. [Mane was recently released from a psychiatric facility. The tattoo "artist" Shane Willoughby should also receive some counseling.]

I bring up the facial tattoo buzz to show contrast of how our art form is used in this so-called "Renaissance" of tattooing. There seems to be a loss of reverence for the craft and how we adorn ourselves permanently. No not every tattoo needs a grand story. Neither do tattoos need to be perfect and solemn. But they should be worn with self-respect and dignity.  And dignity and strength is what the celebration of MLK is about.

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