Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013
Are you true to who you are?Posted Wednesday, October 19, 2011, at 1:59 PM
Tattoos are a form of art on the skin, using the body as a canvas to express yourself.
Even Mattel has realized the body creations are catching on, with their creation of a collector's tokidoki Barbie doll with tattoos.
I was reading through some comments on a blog about the new doll, and I was absolutely shocked at some of the things people were saying.
One commenter said, "Encouraging children that tattoos are cool is wrong, wrong, wrong. Mattel why not put a cigarette and a beer bottle in her hand while you're at it!"
My first thought was, "Hold on, is this person saying that every tattooed human being is a rebellious, nicotine and alcohol addicted freak?" I'm afraid not.
First of all, I have six pieces of art on my flesh. Each one holding a special meaning. (Besides the one I got at 18-years-old to tick my mom off. Oops.)
I have a star on my left wrist, which when aligned with the left thumb signifies a positive guide to the future.
The world "Love" on my right wrist comes from an organization called To Write Love on Her Arms. TWLOHA reminds people all over the world they are loved and deserve to live, despite their depression or addiction.
The peace sign on my right foot -- with the word "peace" in my sister's handwriting -- reminds me that no matter what cruel things people do, I have to remember to be the one keeping the peace. Someone has to remind people that resorting to anger and cruelty is not the way to live life.
Second of all, I have never smoked a cigarette -- or anything else, as a matter of fact -- in my life. The smell and smoke repulses me, and my friends and family get tired of my relentless pushes for them to stop smoking.
And beer? Ew. I think I'll pass.
The issue here is not whether Mattel made the right or wrong decision to create this collector's doll, but why do we have to be so quick to judge?
Stereotypes place us in a category, and word of mouth -- especially in a small town -- stigmatizes us.
From elementary to high school I was an athlete, until I had to get a job. Then, I spent half of my time working and the other half in school. I was a well-rounded kid, and never got in trouble.
Although, I was keen on being different than everyone else, so I dressed differently and had my hair a wide array of colors.
I am not some freak, but I am definitely not going to live by the standards that others set forth for me.
I enjoy tattoos, piercings and hair dye, but does that mean I should be ostracized?
Sometimes I wear band T-shirts and occasionally a funny-looking hat, but I am always me. No matter what other people say.
Chances are, I won't fit into any category you place me. Purple is my favorite color, and I like country, rock and sappy love songs.
Some of the songs I listen to have screaming vocalists, but you will seldom see me without a smile on my face and a skip in my step (literally -- I like to skip).
Everyone should be allowed to act as themselves. Don't be fake just so you are not shunned because, in the end, you are only hurting yourself.
If you are one to quickly place people into stereotypes -- those men and women who apparently are the iconic American -- are you true to who you are?
Are there indulgences you would like to make? Go to a rock concert, get the cartilage of your ear pierced, just step out of your comfort zone and truly be you for a minute.
Have a little fun -- while also being responsible -- then tell me if you still think I am all that different from you.
Sabrina is a staff writer for the Greene County Daily World. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 847-4487.
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