Getting “inked” is a big decision any way you look at it, but choosing a location as obvious as the face is far more of a commitment. Most of us understand the stigma of tattoos and realize that a facial modification like that will relegate you to an extremely limited employment world for the rest of your life.

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Beyond job possibilities, a face tattoo automatically classifies you in the minds of others before they’ve ever taken a moment to get to know you as a person. This is the only place on the body where it’s virtually impossible to cover the piece in any socially acceptable manner; unless of course you have chosen a career as a bank robber in which case, mask away! The socially acceptable part is still questionable, though. So why would someone choose to have their face tattooed, knowing these permanent roadblocks will arise for them? Only the individuals themselves can answer that, but there are several valid reasons to do so. Self-expression, identity, and remembrance are the most common themes behind tattoos. This holds true with any tattoo in any location.

The girl with the “tramp stamp” loves butterflies and she’s embracing openness about her sexual appetites. The man with the teardrops tattooed below his eyes lost his daughter in a drunk driving accident. Those tears are a permanent memorial and should be outside of the rigid social scrutiny typically applied to body modifications. There are plenty of tattoos that end up being regarded as a mistake by the bearer, but making mistakes is only human. The difference is that this “mistake” is visibly worn on a daily basis rather than hidden away like the majority of mistakes made by others. It’s an unappreciated form of blunt honesty dwarfed by the overwhelming disdain for an “imperfect” individual, never mind the fact that a perfect individual does not exist. Realistically, getting a face tattoo as a man is similar to revolutionary acts by the great predecessors in history.

Choosing to display an internal component of your core being as a public mode of scrutiny, opening up to strangers, it is one of the bravest things a person can do. As a man, it’s your duty to stand up to injustice and fight for equality. The stigma against tattoos has no justifiable basis for its existence and therefore discrimination against those who possess them qualifies as an injustice. Furthermore, it’s particularly commendable to fight against the idea that men don’t have deeper emotional selves beyond their rough exterior. Rather than being disregarded as “gutter trash” or “unworthy” the way so many men with facial designs are treated, these individuals ought to be hailed as innovators ahead of their time. These are men who shun the constructs of an unfair society and work to bring attention to an outdated mode of perception. They make injustices visible and confront society head on with its own social prejudices; the best way to nullify unfairness.