Mom makes the interesting decision to permanently ink her young sons
A New York mom was arrested for tattooing the hands of her young sons. Police responded to a report of mistreatment of the two boys, ages 12 and 13, by their mother. The 34-year-old mother tattooed the words “Ride or Die” on the back of her 12-year-old’s hand and a lightning bolt on the back of her 13-year-old’s hand.
Chantilly L. Thomas used a tattoo gun on her two children, but is not a licensed tattoo artist. According to Section 260.21 of NY State Penal Law, it is illegal to tattoo minors under the age of 18, regardless of parental consent. She was charged with unlawfully dealing with a child in the second Degree and was released.
As parents, we make decisions for our children all the time, but permanently inking a visible part of their body before they are old enough to truly consent? Your children are not your property. You have no right to make such a permanent decision on their behalf before they are old enough to do so for themselves.
This may bring up all sorts of other arguments about what decisions parents have the right to make on behalf of their child, but something purely cosmetic and permanent should be something that is consented to by the person receiving it, shouldn’t it? Can a 12 or 13 year old truly consent to something like that? Especially when it’s being done by their mother?
Maybe the 13-year-old will be a Harry Potter super fan for life or something, and won’t mind being marked with a lightning bolt – who knows. But “Ride or Die?” On a 12-year-old? It’s an odd way to mark a mom’s undying love, if that’s what she was trying to do. Why didn’t she just tattoo it on herself?
There’s a reason there’s a thing called “temporary tattoos” for kids. They’re stickers. They come off. Making the decisions to tat up your child, especially with a phrase like “Ride or Die” is not just a bad parenting decision — it’s unbelievably stupid.