Lead singer of The Unseen sings on stage at the Warped Tour

Dipped In Ink
In an article from Education Week, it was stated that the Joplin, Missouri Board of Education changed a district-wide policy in order to forbid visible tattoos. The district, which formerly allowed part or all of tattoos to be shown, voted to change the policy stating that tattoos were inappropriate in a classroom setting.

This is just one instance in which it is clear that tattoos, on a whole, still maintain a negative context in modern society. While a mainstream culture around music buffs and tattoo enthusiasts, tattoos are still looked upon in a negative light.

This may have to do with the fact that while tattoos began as a bond between tribesman, they are also associated with criminal culture. In prison, gang members tattoo symbols on their skin to identify themselves with a certain group. Things like teardrops on the face signified how many lives a person had taken, and ink could also identify how long a person had been in jail, what beliefs a person held or what crimes had been committed.

In addition, as previously mentioned, explorers in England once returned home with tattooed tribesmen to exhibit as "freaks." Likewise, tattooed members of the circus were dubbed "Sideshow Freaks" because of their full-body ink. Any time circuses prospered in the late nineteenth century, tattoos prospered as well, earning the art popularity. While this doesn't discount the medium's credibility, it does show that a negative stereotype was enforced.

While it could be said that tattoos are more popular now than ever before, it may take a much longer time still for them to achieve a level of "normality"