Children and tattoos

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Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1722
Children and tattoos

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2012/01/georgia-mom-arrested-for-allowing-10-year-old-to-get-tattoo/

A 12 YO was hit by a car and killed. His 10 YO brother asked Mom if he could get a tattoo with his brother's name and jersey number. Mother consented, and got one in honor of her 12 YO as well.

When someone at his school noticed the tattoo and contacted authorities, Napier was arrested on Tuesday and charged with misdemeanor cruelty and being a party to a crime, according to WSBTV. Napier bonded out of jail on Wednesday but is shocked that her consent was not enough for her son to get a tattoo.

A Georgia law from 2010 states, ?It shall be unlawful for any person to tattoo the body of any person under the age of 18, except a physician or osteopath.?

Do you think she should be charged with a crime?
Do you think it was appropriate for her to allow her son to get a tattoo in light of their loss?

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

I don't think she should be charged with a crime... Although, I suppose whether the tattoo was his or her idea is hearsay.

I don't think she should have allowed her son to get the tattoo and I don't think the tattoo shop should have done it. There are plenty of other things she could have done to remember her deceased son.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4104

I'm not in favor of doing life-altering or body-altering things when one is an emotional wreck, such as after the death of a son or brother. There's no reason why that kid couldn't wait until he was 18 and do it legally. I hope they're also charging the person/shop that did the tattoo, in addition to the mother.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6697

While I am not personally in favor of tattoos in general, I can't see punishing someone who has already been through so much if she really did not know it was against the law. The tatto place should be the ones who would be responsible for doing it to a minor and not clearly posting the law.

KimPossible's picture
Joined: 05/24/06
Posts: 3320

I don't think think she should be charged.

As far as how i feel about her allowing her son to do it? I don't know. I have mixed feelings. Part of me thinks its too permanent to allow at that age.

But then the other side of me says if there is ever a tattoo that one would not regret, something like that would probably be it so....i don't know.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

It isn't my braniest night, but I'm confused why the mother got arrested if the law stated

t shall be unlawful for any person to tattoo the body of any person under the age of 18, except a physician or osteopath.?

unless the Mother herself put the tattoo on the child?

Joined: 06/04/07
Posts: 1368

Yeah, I don't get why she is being charged just because she consented. The artist should've known the law and be the sole person responsible.

That said, my dd has been asking since my sister passed to have a tattoo in honor of her. I think it's very tasteful and I absolutely understand her reasoning behind it, but I've always told her I, as her parent, don't want to be the one responsible for altering her body on something so permanent. I told her she could think about it and do it when she turns 18. So far, she (now 17) still plans on it. I can empathize where this mother is coming from in consenting, but I think the age of 10 is too young for me to be comfortable to consent to put something so permanent on a child.

Marite13's picture
Joined: 08/07/09
Posts: 3368

I agree the tattoo shop should be getting in trouble, not the mother- although she was charged with being party to a crime (not actually committing the crime), which makes more sense as far as the law goes.

I can't imagine letting my 10 year old get a tattoo- I'm not even sure if I would let my 10 year old get her ears pierced! But she was also obviously probably not in a clear state of mind. I would definitely go the, "that's a lovely thought, you can do it when you're 18" route.

fuchsiasky's picture
Joined: 11/16/07
Posts: 955

I think the artist should have said no even if the mom consented. They are the one who should have known the law and thus should be liable. I don't think the mom should be charged.

I don't think the 10 year old should have gotten the tattoo. Not because of permanence necessarily as this would be a tattoo that wouldn't be regrettable. But because 10 year old skin is still growing and not suitable for tattooing. As the skin grows it will alter the tattoo and it may not end up looking so good as an adult.

RebeccaA'07's picture
Joined: 11/19/07
Posts: 1628

I don't think she should be charged; but I also think as the parent she should have made a better choice and had the boy wait. I understand why they would both want the tattoo, 10 is just TOO young. Further, the tattoo shop should have known the law...and if anything, should get a fine. I still don't think it should be illegal as long as it is consented.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4104

I finally had time to read the full article, here's another interesting bit:

Police say that Napier has refused to cooperate in naming the tattoo artist who could also be prosecuted for violating the law.

Acworth Chief of Police Michael Wilkie told ABCNews.com in an emailed statement that the tattoo appeared “to be the work of an amateur” and said one police theory is that when Napier took the child to get a memorial tattoo similar to her own, she discovered it was illegal and took him somewhere where it could be done “illegally like a ‘jail house’ tattoo.”

“Unfortunately, the mother has elected not to cooperate with the police any further in this investigation,” Wilkie said. “The tragedy of this is that the child’s tattoos are some sort of memorial to a sibling who was lost in a car accident a few years ago. I understand from the investigators that there are several memorial to the deceased child in the apartment where they live. It may be that professional or religious counseling for their/her grief would be more helpful than anything.”

It really sounds to me like they charged the mother with these charges, because she refused to disclose the tattoo artist who did it. Which makes me wonder, why is she protecting that person when it's clearly against the law, there are big signs at the tattoo parlors & all that? I wonder if maybe she did it herself or asked a close friend or relative who knows how to do it?

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4104

"RebeccaA'07" wrote:

I don't think she should be charged; but I also think as the parent she should have made a better choice and had the boy wait. I understand why they would both want the tattoo, 10 is just TOO young. Further, the tattoo shop should have known the law...and if anything, should get a fine. I still don't think it should be illegal as long as it is consented.

Where do you draw the line? What if someone wants a portrait of Hitler tattooed on their child? Or how about their name & phone number tattooed on their preschooler who keeps wandering off? Like someone else said, kids' skin is still growing and the tattoo won't look as good in later years, and I have to wonder if there might even be permanent damage from the chemicals. Nope, just don't alter kids' bodies until *they* are legally able to consent to it.

SID081108's picture
Joined: 06/03/09
Posts: 1348

"Spacers" wrote:

Where do you draw the line? What if someone wants a portrait of Hitler tattooed on their child? Or how about their name & phone number tattooed on their preschooler who keeps wandering off? Like someone else said, kids' skin is still growing and the tattoo won't look as good in later years, and I have to wonder if there might even be permanent damage from the chemicals. Nope, just don't alter kids' bodies until *they* are legally able to consent to it.

I agree with this completely. And no, she should not have consented to allow her 10 year old to get a tattoo, no matter how sweet the sentiment. As someone else said, there are other ways they could have remembered him and the boy could have still gotten the tattoo later in life if he wanted it.

I wasn't sure where I stood on this when reading the original post, but after reading the update (that she has not cooperated with police), I can somewhat understand the charges. It is odd that she is protecting the "tattoo artist", whoever it is. I suspect maybe a friend did it or something after she was turned down by a real tattoo parlor. It seems clear that she knew it was illegal, although knowing if something was illegal or not has nothing to do with whether or not you are held responsible for a crime.

Starryblue702's picture
Joined: 04/06/11
Posts: 5454

Obviously if she's not cooperating with police then she had someone that didn't work in a tattoo shop do this tattoo. In that case I agree with the arrest, as she obviously knew of the law and that's why she didn't take him to a tattoo shop. I'm quite sure no one in a shop would ever tattoo a child if it were against the law. This law is new to me though, as I got my first two tattoos when I was 17 (one in Nevada and one in Hawaii) and my parents had to sign for it.

Joined: 12/10/05
Posts: 1681

The bit Spacers added about the mother not cooperating with police changes things for me. She should be charged. It absolutely sounds like she knew it wasn't allowed and found a way to do it done regardless. If she actually took her child to an "amateur", who knows what sorts of diseases she could have been exposing her son to!

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1722

"kris_w" wrote:

The bit Spacers added about the mother not cooperating with police changes things for me. She should be charged. It absolutely sounds like she knew it wasn't allowed and found a way to do it done regardless. If she actually took her child to an "amateur", who knows what sorts of diseases she could have been exposing her son to!

Me too! It amazes me how the news will pick up half of a story and spin it however they want.

I teach middle school. Thus far, the worst tattoo on a student was her mother's name on her shoulder. As in, her mother had her own name tattooed on her daughter's shoulder. It looked professional. Fortunately only about 1/2 percent of my students over the years have had tattoos. Unfortunately, 1/2 percent of my students have permanent reminders of their (or their parents') decisions at 13. Most of them looked to be the work of extended family.

Marite13's picture
Joined: 08/07/09
Posts: 3368

"kris_w" wrote:

The bit Spacers added about the mother not cooperating with police changes things for me. She should be charged. It absolutely sounds like she knew it wasn't allowed and found a way to do it done regardless. If she actually took her child to an "amateur", who knows what sorts of diseases she could have been exposing her son to!

Agreed! The weird part for me all along was that I couldn't imagine a tattoo shop that would tattoo a child.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

Not to point out the elephant in the room....but is anyone honestly surprised that this was ghetto jailhouse style? I mean, did you think that the Mom was taking her kid to the boutique tattoo artist with their super sterile highbrow equipment at 10? It's like the giant duh in the whole debate, if you ask me.

ftmom's picture
Joined: 09/04/06
Posts: 1538

"Potter75" wrote:

Not to point out the elephant in the room....but is anyone honestly surprised that this was ghetto jailhouse style? I mean, did you think that the Mom was taking her kid to the boutique tattoo artist with their super sterile highbrow equipment at 10? It's like the giant duh in the whole debate, if you ask me.

I dont know, my sister had both her kids ears pierced (at age 6) in a tattoo shop. She wanted to make sure it was done properly.

In reference to the original debate, I was thinking she may not have known about the law, and it was the tattoo parlor that was to blame for not informing her, however, it is sounding like she did know, and chose to expose her child to who knows what, by having an amateur do it.

Joined: 05/31/06
Posts: 4780

"ftmom" wrote:

I dont know, my sister had both her kids ears pierced (at age 6) in a tattoo shop. She wanted to make sure it was done properly.

In reference to the original debate, I was thinking she may not have known about the law, and it was the tattoo parlor that was to blame for not informing her, however, it is sounding like she did know, and chose to expose her child to who knows what, by having an amateur do it.

Yes, my daughters ears are pierced. It was and is legal, so I don't get the comparison, you know?

I have no problem with body modification (my boys are circ'd, my daughter's ears are pierced (done at 3!), my kids get vaccinations and I make ALL of the choices for them as far as what goes into or onto their bodies. All of those choices are within the boundaries of the law. If asked, I could reveal my sources. Obvs, this was not the case. I don't know a tattoo artist who would ink a pre pubescent. I guess I just assumed that this was done by either an amateur or someone outside of a licensed tattoo parlor, given the age of her child.

Joined: 09/25/02
Posts: 205

I'm surprised the tattoo "artist" is not being charged. My brother is a tattoo artist and he doesn't even allow kids under the age of 17 in his shop. Not even my kids, his own niece and nephew! The nerve!

I do think she should be charged. She broke the law. Now do I feel she should spend time in jail?? No. I don't think removing her from her child(ren) would be productive. But if she did not go to a reputable place, which just by the fact the person did a tattoo on a 10yr old leads me to believe it was not a reputable place, she really put her child at risk.

Joined: 09/25/02
Posts: 205

Oh and I read an article earlier today about this. The mother was quoted as saying something like how could I say no when it was in honor of his brother?? It really is simple- just say NO. I say no to my kids all the time. And they survive. There are other ways to honor someone we have lost than inking it into our skin. That can wait until you are an adult.