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Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Ink and the fuzz....

I try very hard not to judge someone based on their appearance.  When I catch myself doing it, I very firmly scold myself, and will sometimes rap myself across the knuckles with a ruler.
As much as I hate it, I know that, at times, I judge.  We all do.  I suppose that it is human nature.

But as we become a more culturally diverse society, our exposure to people that don’t look like us should make us more accepting.
From the time that we are young children, we are taught to not judge books by their covers. 
It is not acceptable to judge people by the color of their skin. 

Unless their skin is colored with ink.  Then it is perfectly acceptable to discriminate.

I can’t say that I’ve experienced any true discrimination, but people have perceptions about me that aren’t accurate.  The predominate perception is that women with tattoos are promiscuous.  I am not sure if that is a true belief, or just wishful thinking.  I am sure that there are promiscuous tattooed women out there…. I’d venture to guess that statistically, there are more promiscuous NON-tattooed women. There are good and bad people in every color, whether natural or inked.

Most every single asshole I’ve ever met, wasn’t tattooed.  All of my tattooed friends are super cool and laid back.  So what does that say about tattooed people? Nothing really, just that I am pretty good at choosing my friends.  But, that, could, in fact, say that tattooed people are good at choosing friends!!

But we can’t judge an entire population of people’s ability to choose friends based on my superior friend choosing skills, can we??

So all this thinking has led me to look into policies regarding tattoos, mainly  police policies.

 It seems that most of these agencies have rules and regulations regarding ink.  And as tattoos seem to become more popular, the ones without rules regarding ink, are drafting some.
There are numerous threads out there on the issue of police with tattoos.  I’ve seen many thoughtful responses.  Yet, many more ignorant closed minded ones.
Like this:
“Professional standards are slowly becoming a thing of the past. There was a time in this country when people employed in certain professions, didn’t have to be told to dress a certain way (they had class and common sense) and the people who looked like trash usually were. I don’t respect anyone who looks like a street thug. Sorry… and I know I’m not alone in that thought process.  I work in upper level management and I will not hire anyone who sports visible tattoos. They are a symbol of the lower class and vulgar.  Period.”
I feel sorry for this person's employees..... I'm sure they are prejudice against more than tattooed people, with that attitude.

Since it is no longer acceptable to openly discriminate based on a person’s race, I believe that there are people out there that aren’t happy unless they can find someone to hate.  So guess what?? People that are tattooed or modified are the perfect target!

But back to police officers with tattoos…..

Many agencies are requiring that officers with tattoos that are visible in their uniforms, must cover them by wearing long sleeves or special arm socks to cover their tattoos.  And it doesn’t matter what their tattoos are.  They could be service related and it doesn’t matter.

While officers often wear long sleeved uniforms, this is not so good for an officer in Arizona in the middle of summer.  Seems like it would create a hostile working environment (for me, I hate to sweat) and throw on some body armor.... HOLY HELL.  It seems especially unfair for the officers who have been working, unsleeved prior to the new regulations.

I can see where this is a difficult topic for those in charge.  Some agencies only ban “offensive” tattoos or those with gang or hate affiliations.  Who is the ultimate judge in these matters?  Doesn’t that set them up for some liability?  No one wants that.  Take responsibility?? Fuck that!

I can totally understand not wanting an officer with a swastika on his neck, or gang symbols…. That would be counterproductive to keeping the peace. 
Even one like this
Are a majority of people really intimidated by a police officer with a beautiful sleeve?  I mean, let’s face it, there are still people that are intimidated by an afro-American officer, and we don’t let their archaic way of thinking dictate police policy.  Why let them influence policy on tattooed police officers??

How do you feel about tattooed police officers?


Anonymous said...

Interesting post. Sad but true, there are companies out there that judge people by the way they look. Lot's of companies won't even hire you if you have visible tatts, no matter how qualified you are. It's discriminatory to not hire someone based on weight, religion, race, sex, or sexual orientation and I don't think anyone should be discriminated against because they have visible tattoos. Tattoos have no effect on a person's work ethic. If I were in a situation that I needed to call on an officer, I would much rather see a tattooed police officer that puts his heart in his job then a non tattooed police officer that is a total dickhead. If companies want to discriminate on something, they should go after ATTITUDES. Attitudes are the number one problem in the work force. Just my opinion.

Tony Kimmons said...

I personally don't care about tattoos on officers as long as they serve and protect the people. They recently revised the Uniform Military Dress codes now that people who want to get a tattoo must be sure that (1) if its so many inches wide and height (2) that it must be covered up. The ones who already had their tattoos done already are somewhat exempt due to the grandfather clause. Yet they must still abide to the uniform military dress code. Which in my personal opinion don't make any damn sense what's so ever!!! If there people who volunteer their services to protect our freedoms does it really matter if they look like the Tattoo Man as long as they kill our enemies.