Responding in Love and Respect to Anger and Hate
Couple of points to make here, and they're worth sharing while I wait for a ride somewhere.
First stop in this latest outrage mob--Jezebel blogger "Jane Marie," who decides to pitch a hissy fit over a tattoo artist refusing to do a neck piece on her. Read it if you will below:
Following that, we have the rather measured, patient, diplomatic response from the man who refused service to Jane Marie, Dan Blythewood:
I'd call your attention to Dan's specific words here, and I think they're great:
"As all tattooers know, a neck or hand tattoo is a big commitment, and traditionally are reserved for those heavily covered and ready to confront society on a daily basis as a heavily tattooed person. Although tattoos are more accepted now than ever, we are still judged daily for our appearance. A hand or neck tattoo may mean the difference between that next job or promotion, and also may spur daily judgmental looks and harassing comments from strangers as many of my friends have experienced. It’s not a thing to be taken lightly and I long ago drew an ethical line in the sand for myself as professional tattooer to turn down “job stoppers” on those who are not already committed to living as a heavily tattooed person. If I was to make the decision again today, I would still say no. I hope for her sake she does not get judged as harshly for her new neck tattoo as she judged myself and the staff of New York Adorned upon walking into our shop..."
"I myself am still collecting tattoos, and do not have hand or neck tattoos yet. I have been tattooing for eight years and will consider getting both hands done after 10 years of service. Why? I take this ancient art form seriously. I take my craft seriously. I take the time-honored traditions of tattooing seriously. Traditions and respect that we are losing daily to a new petulant culture screaming “gimme now!” and treating tattooers with the same disrespect they wrongly just waged at the last Starbucks barista who made their latte. I won’t be part of it and I refuse to support it."
This is how you respond when you can to such crazed outbursts of rage and offense. Do what Dan Blythewood did and respond in love, with kindness and intelligence. If you can manage that, you win the day.