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The Mainstreaming of Tattoos
In the 1960s, tattoos were still something that outlaws and bikers used as calling cards. But in just forty years, permanent skin art is now considered hip and cultured. If you can afford the artwork and the discomfort, you can make as grand of a one-of-a-kind aesthetic statement as you can envision and endure, and you can do that pretty much regardless of your walk-of-life.
But really, tattoos have become a recognizable, playful and even trendy part of modern culture. Take for instance...
...Part of the Presidential campaign budget was spent on 400,000 "Obama" tattoos. The hundreds of thousands of temporary tattoos were spread across sixty-six varied Obama campaign offices as part of a pre-Halloween promotion in October.
...America's favorite political family, the Kennedys, aren't making the news for their politics so much these days, but they definitely are making the new over their tattoos. Caroline Kennedy and her butterfly are commanding more buzz than the lame duck legislation that's being bullied through Congress these days.
...Tattoo shops finally headed to that "everyman" bastion of modern existence: the shopping mall. With increasing and broadening interest, there is enough general traffic to tattoo parlors such that they can now exist alongside the food court and retail outlets of a shopping center. Getting inked can now be as close and accessible as new shoes, new jeans, a hair cut or getting your nails done.
...And in the category of celebrity tattooing, let's not forget Stephen Baldwin and his new Hannah Montana tattoo. This just proves how a tattoo of a fake celebrity (Hannah Montana) on a washed up celebrity (Baldwin) can then sort boost the fame of the portraying celeb (Miley Cyrus). It's clearly the sort of overly-referential thing that wouldn't be happening if tattoos weren't so damn popular in the mainstream right now...
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