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Speak Out
Are tattoos a form of protected speech?

Oct. 1, 2012

By Jeremy Quattlebaum, Student Voices staff writer

Tattoos have become as ubiquitous as dyed hair and multiple piercings, but are they a form of protected speech?

That was one of the questions in the case of Coleman v. City of Mesa, which was decided by the Arizona Supreme Court.

In July 2008, Ryan and Laetitia Coleman requested a permit to open a tattoo parlor in Mesa, Ariz. The city denied the permit in March 2009, saying that the shop was “not appropriate for the location or in the best interest of the neighborhood,” according to court documents. The couple sued, arguing that the denial was a violation of their First Amendment  right to free speech in the U.S. Constitution and the free-speech provision in the Arizona Constitution.

Their lawsuit was rejected by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Larry Grant, who said the city’s decision was “a reasonable and rational regulation of land use.” The case eventually made its way to the state Supreme Court.

The First Amendment states that “Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech…” In this case, “Congress” means the City of Mesa government.

The case looked at whether the process of injecting ink into the dermis of skin is “purely expressive activity,” meaning that the act of tattooing is a form of expression, or if the action is “conduct with an expressive component,” meaning that it has some type of expression but it is not at the core of the process.

The Arizona court ruled unanimously that tattoos and tattooing are forms of free speech. It said that tattoos, which contain words, messages and art, “may be purely decorative or serve religious, political, or social purposes.” It reinstated the Colemans’ lawsuit, which was returned for trial in a lower court. The Arizona justices based their decision partly on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling in Anderson v. City of Hermosa Beach, which said tattoos, the process of tattooing, and the business of tattooing are “forms of pure expression fully protected by the First Amendment.” In the lower court trial, the Colemans’ First Amendment rights will be weighed against the government’s right to regulate businesses.

This case doesn’t mean that the First Amendment protects the act of tattooing everywhere. In the case State v. White (2002), the  South Carolina Supreme Court ruled that “the process of injecting dye to create the tattoo is not sufficiently communicative to warrant protections.”



What do you think?

Are tattoos or the act of tattooing a protected form of expression? By nature, is expression the central component of the act of tattooing, or is it merely a small part of the action? Did the Arizona Supreme Court make the right decision, or do you side with the South Carolina Supreme Court? Join the discussion and let us know what you think!
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Comments
9/13/2018
Murrieta
Chrishawn
Mr.Jabro/Murrieta Canyon Academy
I think tattoos is a way to express personality. I agree with Arizona. Tattoos is a form of freedom of speech and tells stories.

12/19/2017
Magnolia/Texas
Mandy
Metzger/Magnolia West High School
Mandy McGrew Metzger Govt.-5 18 December 2017 Posted Comment I believe that tattooing is one-hundred percent a way to express just as much as drawing, painting, dancing, and even talking. People tell stories through tattoos and those stories are not always something to be ashamed of, some stories are beautiful and give a greater meaning to someone’s life. Though the town does have a free say in whether they want a public tattooing business in their town, the reasoning behind not allowing the permit is something that i believe is unfair and that they are not able to give that as a good enough reason as to why the business cannot be placed.

5/2/2017
Newark, DE
Will
Mrs. K/West Park Place Elementary
I think that it is okay to make your tattoo parlor anywhere you want.

9/20/2016
Murrieta, Ca
Jabril Jones
Mr. Jabro
Yes, I feel tattoos are a form of expression and free speech. No matter if it is demeaning or not it is expression so that is how an individual feels. I think the Arizona Supreme Court did make the right decision.

9/20/2016
CA
Robert Sells
Mr. Jabro MCA
Yes, I believe that tattoos are a form of speech and should be recognized as such. In America, we have freedom of speech and tattoos are a form of speech so you simply can't make tattoos illegal. You're preventing people from expressing themselves in a harmless way which goes against part of the reason why our government was created in the first place.

9/19/2016
Murrieta/CA
Bryson
mr.jabro/Canyon Academy
Tattoos is a form of expressing ones self, and its perfectly fine having one because its your body and you can express yourself, but I do not believe that the act of making an tattoo is not, and can be quelled if the state says so for tattoo parlors are often seen in "ghetto" areas, and overall given a bad name and you cant deny that hoodlums are often pictured with tattoos, but overall its just people trying to make money off of their skills and expressing their passion . So, I would have to agree with the South Carolina court decision, for the business of tattooing is not an expressive act for businesses should not get those rights.

9/19/2016
Murrieta
Robert
Mr. Jabro
Yes, I believe that tattoos are a form of expression and should not be illegal. They are apart of freedom of speech and should remain that way. If you take away tattoos, you might as well take away freedom of speech because you're not letting that person express themselves. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean that it's wrong. It just means that your standards are whack and should be checked because last time I checked, we're still Americans and have the right to do what we want with our bodies.

3/2/2016
Rudyard/MT
Graysen
Mrs. Campbell/North Star
Tattoos are a form of expression. However, the act of tattooing is not. The tattoo itself should be protected by the 1st Ammendment. It is freedom of speech and it is your body. The city of Mesa, Arizona has the right to deny the opening of a tattoo parlor if they feel it is not appropriate for the city. The tattoo parlor is there to help others express themselves and make money. In the end, I agree with the South Carolina Supreme Court decision.

12/9/2015
Murrieta, CA
Jacob Strommen
Mr.Jabro/creekside highschool
Tattoos are another way to express the person you are and need to be protected. they allow someone have the memory that they will cherish forever and to have something that identifies them as themselves. there is no reason to cover those tattoos just because one person disagrees with them. for years tattoos were used to show acceptance along with unity

12/2/2015
Murrieta ca
Cynthia
Mr.jabro /creekside
Tattoos are a form of freedom of speech. They are a way to express who you are or what you like. I feel like they do protect it but when it comes to getting a job ... They can't show why should we have to cover up who we are when people see us the most . In this generation it's getting regular to having tattoos so why hide them. They are meaningful in some ways to each person

9/2/2015
Sidney MT
Maika
Mr. Faulhaber
Tattoos are a form of freedom of speech in my opinion. They're the way that people express themselves through the images and colors they decide to get. When people get tattoos it may be because that certain symbol or word has a meaning to them. I think that the courts should've given them the right to have their business at the location they wanted.

12/16/2014
Arkansas
alex
mountain home high school
i believe that tattoos are a freedom of speech if u feel like put it in your skin then go a head it should not matter what others have to say or think of it .after all its not them who is doing it if i feel like defacing my body then i sure will its not their choose what i can and cant do to my body and just because a person gets a tattoo doesn't make the bad or evil just means they have some thing to say in their own way

11/14/2014
Stroudsburg/Pennsylvania
Mae
Mr. Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
In my opinion, tattoos or tattooing is a form of protected expression. I also think that the the main component of tattooing is expression. I only partially feel that the Arizona court's decision was right because it is a freedom of speech but it it also a way of expressing one's true feelings on their body. It could also be a form of honoring someone. If someone pasted on and you were very close to them, one way of honoring them would be in the form of the tattoo.

11/14/2014
Strroudsburg, PA
Owen
Mr. Hanna/ SJHS
If someone wants a tattoo go for it, I have nothing agasint tattoos. It should the person's choice of getting a tattoo and the South Carolina Supreme Court should not have anything to do with it. If someone wants a tattoo to express something... I mean whatever makes them happy. It is their choice to do what they want to with their body, that is why I agree with the Arizona Supreme Court. It's freedom of speech just tattooed on someone's skin.

11/14/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Allendy
Mr.hanna/stroudsburg JHS
I think tattoos are because there might be words u dont want people to know. Like your religon or a symbold or somthing. I also think that people should be allowed to tatto what ever they want no one can stop them. But that is what i rhink about tattos

11/13/2014
Stroudsburg,PA
Jessica M
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I believe that tattoos or the act of tattooing is a form of protected expression. This is due to the fact that a tattoo can be a symbol or statement of one's personal opinion. Speech is the act of communication of ones' feeling, thoughts and opinions and tattoos sometimes express these things, so they can be grouped together into one category. As United States citizens we have freedom of speech and if a tattoo is a way of speech and speech is a protected form of expression than tattoos can also be considered that. The main purpose of getting a tattoo is to express oneself to others through a permanent visual aspect, thus meaning that the act and the final product are forms of expression. So I do side with the Arizona Supreme Court because if someone wants to get a tattoo or open a parlor offering tattoos then they should be able to. After all is this not America the land of the brave and more importantly the free and as long as this is still our country we should have freedoms to do what we want with ourselves. A tattoo is just our way of saying hey here are my thoughts and we should be able to do that without questioning or legal proceedings.

11/13/2014
Stroudsburg,PA
Jessica M
Mr.Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I believe that tattoos or the act of tattooing is a form of protected expression. This is due to the fact that a tattoo can be a symbol or statement of one's personal opinion. Speech is the act of communication of ones' feeling, thoughts and opinions and tattoos sometimes express these things, so they can be grouped together into one category. As United States citizens we have freedom of speech and if a tattoo is a way of speech and speech is a protected form of expression than tattoos can also be considered that. The main purpose of getting a tattoo is to express oneself to others through a permanent visual aspect, thus meaning that the act and the final product are forms of expression. So I do side with the Arizona Supreme Court because if someone wants to get a tattoo or open a parlor offering tattoos then they should be able to. After all is this not America the land of the brave and more importantly the free and as long as this is still our country we should have freedoms to do what we want with ourselves. A tattoo is just our way of saying hey here are my thoughts and we should be able to do that without questioning or legal proceedings.

11/13/2014
Stroudsburg, PA
Casie
Hanna/Stroudsburg JHS
I agree with the Arizona Supreme Court. Tattoos are a way for people to express themselves. Expression is the central reason that most people get tattoos. Tattoos are onw way that people can express their feelings and share their opinion. It's their body and they can put whatever they want on it. Nobody can tell them to get rid of a tattoo because it's permanent, they chose to put it their and that's where they are keeping it.

11/13/2014
Stroudsburg
Mark M
MR.HANNA SJHS
I agree with the Arizona Supreme Court. You should be aloud to tattoo, a lot of people do it. So many people have tattoos and their tattoos usually have some sort of meaning to them, why wouldn't these particlar people be aloud to open a tattoo shop. America is about freedom of speech right? If you want to inject ink into your skin than go right ahead. The First Amendment states that Congress shall make no law, so they shouldn't make a law that you can't tattoo, it is a freedom of speech. You can believe what you want to believe that's why people inject things into there body. I agree that tattoos should be aloud. If you believe that that's the right thing to do than do it. It's not up to the government or anybody else what you do with your body that's why people tattoo to show that this is what they believe and they strongly believe it.

6/11/2014
Stroudsburg PA
Livia M.
Mr. Hanna StroudJHS
I agree with the Arizona Supreme Court. Tattoooing is a choice and a way of expression. As the first amendment states, we do Infact have the right to free speech in which tattooing usually represents. Tattoos are usually sayings or images of a persons choice based on their beliefs, values, religion etc. This is a form of speech. As a member of a family who sees tattoos or a regular basis, I do not find it inappropriate but admirable. I believe it is also a freedom of rights sort of situation and believe that it is merely a persons choice on how they choose to express themselves and what they put on their body

4/11/2014
Frisco, TX
Ashley
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos are a form of protected speech for people. Every tattoo has a meaning, interest, or story behind it. Taking away someone's opportunity for expression to write on their bodies what they want to right is not the court's position to take away. Even if the tattoo is obscene we can't do anything about it. An obscene tattoo is permanent. Just like permanent pictures or writings on t-shirts that we see people wear everyday. People have the right to expression and tattoos are just one of the ways to express one's self. A person's body is their body and even though we may disagree with what they do with it we can't take away people's rights.

4/11/2014
Frisco, Texas
Sarah
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos and the act of tattooing, I think, are two very different things. While a tattoo is clearly a form of expression, the actual act of tattooing stands on more questionable grounds. There is certainly some form of expression that goes into tattooing, but owning a tattoo parlor is different than say, speaking your mind about a certain issue. The tattooing is done for monetary gain, and is usually not so much about expressing oneself as it is making money. Therefore, tattooing can be seen as an enterprise, one that the government has the right to regulate.

4/11/2014
Frisco, TX
Sahar
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos are in fact a form of protected speech. Most tattoos symbolize emotional connections to loved ones or a way to express ones self. Offensive and obscene tattoos however, are a different story. These tattoos should be required to be covered up in a public facility, but one should not be punished for this form of expression. Overall, tattoos are harmless and should be protected under freedom of speech.

4/10/2014
Frisco,Tx
Fabiha
Adams/CTECenter
When discussing the issue of whether or not tattoos should be protected under freedom of speech, I would agree with the fact that it is protected under free speech. I say this because tattoos can serve as a symbol of something important to the person who got it or as an expression of themselves. Tattoos are becoming very common now, I see no reason that someone should be viewed differently for expressing themselves on their own bodies.

4/10/2014
Frisco/TX
Sydney
Adams/ CTE Center
I believe that tattoos are a form of free speech. Every tattoo has a story behind it. Although a tattoo is not the same thing as verbally telling a story, it is still telling a story, which we have the right to do. To some people, tattoos are seen as a negative thing, but what other people do to their bodies is none of anyone else's business. A tattoo shop would not have a negative effect on that environment. If you didn't like the tattoo shop, then don't go in it. If a lawyer was requesting to open a firm there, he probably would have been granted approval, so why is it different for a tattoo artists. Tattoo artists are human beings just like you and me. They work hard for what they have and want to have, so i believe it is wrong to deny his request for a tattoo shop in the location of his choice.

4/10/2014
Frisco/Texas
Jacob
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos are definitely a form of protected speech. For example, if a relative has passed away and you want to remember that person, you should have a tattoo with person's name on it. People get tattoos to describe themselves and it doesn't make them a bad person. My sister has 3 tattoos and they don't make my sister a bad person. Also, professional athletes can have tattoos, but they aren't permitted to be display on public television since they can be obscene language or images.

4/9/2014
Frisco/Texas
Taylor
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos should definitely be a form of protected symbolic speech. You should be able to obtain a job with a tattoo, because they are a form of free speech that is protected under the first amendment clause and are appropriate just as clothing is under symbolic speech.

4/9/2014
Frisco, TX
Charlotte
Adams/ CTE Center
Certain forms of Tattoos should be protected under speech.Tattoos "have served as amulets, status symbols, declarations of love, signs of religious beliefs, adornments and even forms of punishment." (Smithsonian Magazine) They symbolized personal stories and emotional connections, that people can have and remember forever. Obviously an absence, and graphic tattoo is not welcoming, and should be covered up in a public facility. Even if your not ashamed of it. I don't think you should be sent to jail for a tattoo, because it can have some resemblance and symbolic meaning to the owner. And taking that right away shows that the government doesn't care if the public wants to express them self.

4/9/2014
Frisco/TX
Claire
Adams/CTE Center
Tattoos are protected under freedom of expression but can be limited. For example, a professional NBA player has the right to possess an offensive, but are not permitted to display it on public television because it is seen as obscene language or images. It is not appropriate to be displayed to all viewers because not all viewers may be mature enough to understand the meaning or some may be offended by its content. The athletes are allowed to have the tattoos but it is just regulated on where they can be visible in order to protect the credibility of the network that they are shown on or the team that they play for.

4/9/2014
Frisco/ TX
Victoria
Adams/ CTE Centre
Tattoos are a form of expression of speech. Many people get tattoos as means of describing themselves in a particular way. And whether it's a image of an animal or an important phrase, the image being depicted on a person should not alter the way they are viewed as a whole. Because tattoos often hold a personal meaning, being denied the right to open a tattoo parlour, is a violation of the Coleman's right of speech.

4/9/2014
Frisco, TX
Alberto
Adams/CTECenter
When in discussion of whether tattoos are protected wit the first amendment or not, one must take note of the environment that they are in. Obviously, if someone has tattoos with obscenities on a private area or at school, they should and will most likely be required to be covered. But tattoos are ways in which people express themselves through symbols and words. Tattoos should be protected under freedom of speech.

9/27/2013
Watertown/MA
Heidi
Rimas/WHS
I think that tattoos are a form of expression. Getting a tattoo can have a special meaning to a person, which is why they get one. My cousin has a tattoo of her son's name after he passed away, this to me has a special meaning. If you get a tattoo just to get one, it doesn't make them a bad person. maybe that her is having problems and getting tattoos are the only way they can relax and claim

9/27/2013
Watertown/MA
Heidi
Rimas/WHS
I think that tattoos are a form of expression. Getting a tattoo can have a special meaning to a person, which is why they get one. My cousin has a tattoo of her son's name after he passed away, this to me has a special meaning. If you get a tattoo just to get one, it doesn't make them a bad person. maybe that her is having problems and getting tattoos are the only way they can relax and claim

9/25/2013
MA
marianna
rimas
i do believe that tattoos are a form of expression. i think it is a choice to get one. if it means something important to you then you should get it

9/20/2013
Sidney, MT
Jessi Harmon
Mr. Faulhaber
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression. They are a personal choice, no one forces you to get one. A new business should not be rejected the right to start the business because of a select few who are against them.

9/20/2013
Sidney, Montana
Dace
Mr. Faulhaber
I personally have a tattoo that is a representation of what my life has been surrounded by since I was 5. If I were judged by my tattoo I'd tell that person to just go away because my tattoo means more to me then they do. So in reality yeah some tattoos aren't appropriate for the work place but that is their decision to get it so it should not be up to the employer to decide whether it's appropriate or not.

9/13/2013
Sidney, Montana
Jocelyn
Mr. Faulhaber/ Sidney High School
I think tattoos are a form of protected speech and shouldn't be denied of a new business just because the people don't agree with the idea of injecting ink into the dermis of the skin. Most people get tattos in memory of loved ones that have passed or a very important time in their life. If it means something to you, get it!

3/19/2013
Denver,Colorado
Alexander
Mrs.Mumby/ John F Kennedy high school
Vickie the 4th amendment has nothing to do with tattos as a form of protected speech maybe the 1st ammendment

3/19/2013
Denver, CO
Nayeli Marquez
John F. Kennedy High School MMumby
Tattoos are a form of expression because it gives you an idea of the way that person is by just viewing them from appearence. Many People use tattoos as a way to express themselves, many people use dancing, painting, writing, and singing as a way to express themselves. Well, tattoo is another way for many people to have a voice. It is free speech.

2/20/2013
Sidney/Montana
Vickie
Mr. Faulhaber
Tattooes are very popular and a lot of people also dont like them. They are a form of expression which is protected by the 4th amendment. They should be able to start their own tattoo business because of that.

2/20/2013
Sidney/Montana
Maggie
Faulhaber/Sidney High School
I think that tattoos are a form of protected speech, these images were put on your own body by your own choice, and if it has a meaning to some part of your life than you should be able to get it and not be critizied for it!

2/11/2013
Rudyard, Montana
Aron
Mrs. Campbell, Northstar
Tattooes are protected by form of expression, they show how one is feeling or who a person is and what the believe in. Expression is a major part in the action becuase its a big reason why people get them is to express themselves and show individuality. The Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision. The case should never have been put off because of location. Businesses show expression by what signs they put up and what items they pick the sell.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg, PA
Julian
Central Dauphin High School
I believe that tattoos are a protected form of free speech mainly because people usually get them to express a certain message. Tattoos serve as personal symbolism that could main a great deal, depending on the owner. Getting a tattoo is a descion that the owner makes and to take that freedom from them would be a violation of the first ammendment.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg PA
Chris
CDHS
i beilieve that the people had the right to open a tattoo parlor. I do think it goes agiants the first amendemt. In the constitution it states that people have the freedom of speech. opening a parlor is not a violation of the first amendment and they should be aloud to open a tattoo parler.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg Pennsylvania
Justyce M
CDHS
I think that tattoos can be for many purposes! Like religion you see many people with tattoos that are crosses and to fight to have a tattoo like that on you is taking away the right for you to express your religon and self!!!!

2/6/2013
Harrisburg PA
Randi
Central Dauphin High School
I believe getting a body tattoo is your personal choice and its your right to make that decision. Fighting for that right is wrong in my opinon because your body belongs to you and no one else.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg PA
Randi
Central Dauphin High School
I believe getting a body tattoo is your personal choice and its your right to make that decision. Fighting for that right is wrong in my opinon because your body belongs to you and no one else.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg, PA
Jordan
Central Dauphin High School
I think people should be able to have a tattoo if they want it on their skin for the rest of their life. They are for many reasons such as religious reasons, in memory of a passed loved one, or art. If somebody wants a tattoo, it should be protected speech.

2/6/2013
harrisburg
Xander
Mrs morris
I think that tattoos are a form of free and protected speech it is just ridiculous that they would say it is wrong for that type of place.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg/ PA
Amanda
Central Dauphin High School
Many people get tattoos for sentamental reasons, religous reasons, and many other things. What about freedom of religion? They are also a form of art. There are not any restrictions on art except for graffiti. Its the persons own body though and property. It is the persons choice on what they want to do with it. I do think tattos are a protected form of speech.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg PA
Zoe Y
Central Dauphin High School
I think that having tattoos is on you, and on your personal property and you shouldnt have to fight for a right to get tattoos.

2/6/2013
Harrisburg
Adam
Mrs. Morris
I feel as though that people should be able to open tattoo parlors if they want to whereever they want. this is a violation of the first amendment and regardless of what the city thinks. Also it's not like anyone has to go in there is they have anything against tattoos. So all in all i feel that Ryan and Laetitia Coleman should of been able to open their tattoo parlor, they had their first amendent right violated

1/21/2013
Montgomery, tx
Taylor C.
Metzger/Montgomery High School
I honestly think that tattooing is a freedom of speech. If someone wants to put a piece of art on their body to describe an event that happen in their life or for someone they have loved and has passed away then who has the right to tell them no. If they want it on their body forever then let them, its their body, their life and their choice. Telling them no is like telling someone they cant say how they really feel about something.

1/16/2013
Montgomery,TX
Nick
Montgomery
The government shouldn't be allowed tell you what you can put into your skin. Especially if it describes and expresses you in your own way. That's saying your not allowed to personalize yourself and beliefs. Under the 1st you should be allowed to be free to speak out especially if its in a tattoo. Its no different from wearing a hat or shirt,and they're limiting what you can say? I disagree you should have the right to Freedom of speech.

1/11/2013
Sidney, MT
Lacey
Mr. Faulhaber
Yeah tattoos are a form of protected speech. It is the first Amendment that says Freedom of Speech. And as long as it is on the persons own body it is that persons right to their own opinion.

1/11/2013
Montana
Heidi
Faulhaber
Tattoos are a form of protected speech. Throughout history and other cultures, tattoos have more sentimental meaning than just something to do when you're 18. It is a sacred tradition and almost a connection to their anncestors and that should not ever be taken away.The possibilties are endless when it comes to designing. It is entirely up to the person who pays the money for the ink to decide what they want. It is symbolic speech in its own way. And if a defamatory comment is in a tatto, there is nothing that you can do about it. That's what makes tattoos so unique and awesome.

1/8/2013
Montgomery, TX
Danielle L.
Metzger/MHS
I think that tattoos are part of the first amendment because its part of a persons beliefs. Tattoos are becoming part of Americas society, and when a person gets a tattoo its a part of them. The tattoo either has meaning or its a mistake but its still part of the person. By saying that tattoos arent part of freedom of speech is like saying oh well this person got a cross and thats not my religious belief so he/she can't have it.

1/4/2013
Belleville/NY
Kylee
Colby/Belleville-Henderson
I believe that tattoos are another form of expression that people take advantage of under the impression that the constitution will protect them. I don't believe it's right. If you are being discriminatory or otherwise harming someone else through your own expression, how is that warranted?

1/3/2013
Montgomery TX
DANIEL J.
Metzger Montgomery High
I think when a person gets a tattoo it means something to them if some just get a tattoo just because that is just crazy. Tattoos are a way to to express a person feelings and emotions. It's just a little crazy how people don't want other people to express there feelings on paper but not on there skin.

1/3/2013
Montomgery/TX
morgEn
Metzger/Montgomery High School
Tattoos, depending on the person, can mean a great deal or nothing at all but most of the time a person decides to get a tattoo for a very important purpose whether it be in religion, a loss, a sort of promise to some loved one, or simply showing who or what you stand for. In my opinion tattoos are definately a from of expression that is protected by the first amendment. in the case of the Colemans, for the city to deny them in the first place was ridiculous. you do not tell an artist he/she cannot express themselves.

1/3/2013
Montgomery Tx
Evan L.
Metzger/Montgomery High
I do believe that tattoos are a form of Free speech. They all have unique and personal meanings to all of them. People get tattoos to express themselves in a very special way and being able to keep the art on them forever. I do think that expression is the central point in getting tattoos. The whole concept of getting a tattoo is to commemorate someone or something and being able to show it off. I personally do not feel that the Arizona Supreme court made the right decision by denying the land grant to these people. I think it does violate the first amendment, because people should be able to express themselves in anyway and government should not be able to interfere with what types of businesses are established in certain locations. As long as they have trained professionals working in the tattoo shop and are not harming anyone, i don't see why they should be denied. People are gonna get tattoos one way or another and there is no stopping them from getting one, whether its in Arizona where these people were denied or somewhere else.

1/3/2013
Montgomery, TX
Sharon A.
Metzger/Montgomery High
The number of people across the world that have tattoos has increased within the past several years. I am a firm believer that art has many forms and in this case tattooing is one of them. Therefore, tattoos and the act of tattooing should be a protected form of expression. Just because the location might not be convenient for others does not give them the right to deny a permit for a parlor.

1/3/2013
Montgomery TX
Katie J
Metzger/Montgomery High
The act of tattooing is a form of protected expression. No government should tell anyone what they can and can't do with ones own body. That was (in some way) written in the First Amendment. When the Amendment stated that there is freedom of speech, press, and religion, it falls perfectly into this argument on whether or not a tattoo parlor should be denied its rights just because it "was not appropriate for the location". The Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision by letting the couple have their shop.

1/3/2013
Montgomery/Tx
Sean S
Meztger/Montgomery
Ryan and Laetitia Coleman should have never been denied the permit to open a tattoo parlor. Tattoos are a form of expression, and denying them this permit is a violation of the first amendment. They should be able to open a tattoo parlor wherever it is available, without interjections by unconstitutional interference due to our right of the first amendment.

12/10/2012
CA
Yovana
MHS
The tattoos are form of protected expression. It is up to the person whether they want a tattoo or not and what it expresses. Expression is the central component of the act of tattooing. In the case it was not about anyone being denied the right to tattoo themselves rather the parlor itself was seen as inappropriate for the location.

12/9/2012
Montgomery TX
Danielle B.
Metzger/Montgomery High
I definitely think that tattoos are a form of free speech. They are something that have special and important meanings behind them. Tattoos are a way of expression just like art or poetry.Our freedom of speech is protected by the first amendment. So with the city denying the tattoo shop I believe it did violate the first amendment. However I do see the city's side as they said that they didnt grant the permit because of the location of the shop not because of the tattoo shop itself.

12/9/2012
California
Melissa
Monache
Yes they are. If we have the right to say what we want, (as long as its in person and not on the phone) write what we want, and read what we want then why should we be forbidden from using our bodies as another form of speech. It's simply another method of communicating our message.

12/3/2012
Montgomery/TX
Madison G.
Metzger/Montgomery High School
I think that tattoos are definitely a form of protected speech. The tattoos on ones body are nothing more than their way of expressing themselves in a form of art. The state didn't necessarily deny the shops permit because it was against the act, but because it didn't believe the location was appropriate.

12/3/2012
Benson, AZ
ALy
Sorensen
I think that tatoos are a freedom of speech. With the exception that they dont harm or insult anyone around them. Many people have vulgar or inapropriate writtings on their bodies. WHich could lead to other problems.

11/30/2012
Montgomery/TX
Holly Eddleman
Metzger/Montgomery High
I believe tattoos are a form of protected speech because they are a form of one's personal expression whether it be religious or non-religious. Although I also believe that the Arizona court did not go against the Coleman's 1st amendment rights by denying them a building permit. The state denied the permit simply because the shop was not "appropriate for the location or in the best interest of the neighborhood".

11/30/2012
Montgomery/TX
Luis Lozoya
Metzger/MHS
As citizens of the united states of America,under the First Amendment we have the right to express our our feelings and opinions whether they are verbal or in art form such as tattoos. If we as Americans have to worry about our tattoos being unconstitutional, then it kind of makes me wonder what other bigot type of nonsense will be appealed in the upcoming years.

11/29/2012
Porterville, CA
Weston
Smith/MHS
The question (at least how I am interpreting it) should not be about whether or not tattoos are a form of speech protected by the 1st amendment, but whether government can say what types of businesses can be established in certain locations. As far as I know, the courts did not break any laws by saying this tattoo parlor could not be opened in that particular area because they didn't say they could conduct business, they just can't do it in that particular location.

11/28/2012
Irving, TX
Brittany H
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattooing is a way that may people use to express themselves. Being able to express yourself in the United States is freedom of speech. The act of tattooing should be protected by the first amendment because it qualifies as an act of free speech. Arizona made the right decision in ruling tattoos as freedom of speech. No one should be told what they can and cant express with artwork on their own body.

11/19/2012
Belleville, New York
Kristia
Miss Colby/BHCS
Tattoos are a form of expressing oneself. Anyone should have the right do put whatever tattoo they want on their own body. Tattoos should be protected by the First Amendment.

11/16/2012
Irving/TX
Rose
Bradley/Nimitz
There are two completely, different topics here. One of them is the zoning permit. The state rejected that proposal because the said it was not appropriate for the location. Zoning laws are meant to protect and regulate the type of establishment that can be build around a certain area. Tattoos are a way of freedom of expression. Because they are a for of expressing feelings through art. The state of Arizona didn't violate their 1st amendment, they simply rejected the proposal for zooming a tattoo shop in that area.

11/16/2012
Belleville, NY
John
Miss Colby- BHCS
Tattoos are as much a form of expressing oneself as speaking, writing, singing, drawing, wearing the kinds of clothes you want to wear, and other things. The negative stigma that has been developed by society concerning tattoos isn't all there is to them.

11/16/2012
Belleville New York
Jordan
Colby/ Belleville Henderson
A tattoo is a form of protected speech. It can define who you are and that's something that no one can tell you that you can or cannot do. Regardless of what people say and regardless of what people think if you want a tattoo you have your own right to go and get one. It should not be against their free right to open a tattoo parlor it's just like any other buisness and why should people judge it just because it makes tattoos? If someone wants a tattoo they can go get one, no one should be able to say no you cannot.

11/16/2012
Irving/Tx
Kimberly L
Helen Bradley
Yes, tattooing is a way for someone to express themselves, from a simple "I love mom" tattoo on the arm to a quote or an image that represents what you believe in or what you stand for, but not allowing a tattoo parlor to open up in a certain area isn't something to be shocked about. There have been major stores that have been denied to open up in a certain area, and one of those being Walmart.

11/15/2012
Irving/Texas
Pablo G.
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are as much a means of expression as doing one's hair or dressing in a certain style. Protection should be enabled for the action, as it reflects a personal reflection of what a person wants to display on his/her body. It's his/her choice what he/she wants to show out to the world, and the protection provided by our First Amendment should also cover that of tattoos. The Arizona Supreme Court made the constitutionally correct decision, recognizing that tattoos are pure forms of expression, thus earning them protection underneath the First Amendment.

11/15/2012
Irving/TX
Stephen S.
Bradley/Nimitz
A tattoo is a form of speech through art, showing who you are, showing your personality. A person should be subjected to wearing something they don't feel comfortable wearing or having. Tattoos aren't what they use to be, most people look down on tattoos, saying that everyone who has one is either a gang member or has been in jail; that isn't all true though. A lot of people get tattoos as a sign of friendship in a group, or a permanent patch to show there accomplishments. People in motorcycle gangs get them to represent their group, people who were formally in the marines, navy, army or the air force get tattoos to represent their achievements or there battalion i.e. 2nd Battalion 5th Marines. It shouldn't be against any rules nor amendments to have a tattoo or dye your hair, its just an expression.

11/13/2012
irving
JAsminT.
Bradley
Tattoos are a form of speech, art and self expression. Tattoos are almost like art, you express yourself through them. I know that tattoos are to symbolize a lot more then a gang member or someone on drugs. A lot of people get tattoos for their family or something they believe in. I see no problem in allowing people to express them selves on their own body stating whatever it is that they want to have tattooed. I am a firm believer that the tattoos should be considered a way of self expression and should be guarded by the first amendment. If people are allowed to protest and say things out loud people should be allowed to have tattoos

11/12/2012
Irving, Texas
Ashley P
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are indeed a protected form of expression. By choosing to have ink injected into your body, you have created an art within yourself. Tattoos could be used to symbolize various things from honoring a passed love one to simply getting a tattoo of something as delicate and beautiful as a flower. It may be true that not all tattoos have pure, true meaning. But in the end, it is a method of expression which should be valued and non-regulated besides on the age required to get a tattoo. The Arizona court is on the right track in saying tattoos are forms of free speech. Although, i would debate that expression may not be the central component of the act of tattooing. Regardless of which, tattoos should be considered a form of expression., therefore protected by the first amendment.

11/11/2012
Irving, TX
Liliana
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a form of expression, therefor should be protected by the First Amendment. I think the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision because a lot of people choose to tattoo something that means something to them, so they are expressing something through tattoos.

11/6/2012
montgomery tx
jsheleheda
montgomery high school
I think that getting tattoos expreses a way of speech as the article said. Some people hold that as there only way of saying what they beilieve and what they like what they trust. To take that away would be like taking away freedom of speech in all forms and fashions. tattoos are painfull but some people endure it becaouse there willing to go through that to put what they hold in high regard on there body for life but they probably have put alot of time in to thinking about what they whant an why they whant it. So im against not leting the couple open a tattoo parlor.

11/3/2012
Irving/TX
Bethany
Bradley/Nimitz
To express is to make one's thoughts or feelings known, in whatever way may be the best or preferable. In the case of tattooing, this medium of art is a way of displaying thoughts, feelings, or simply great art on oneself permanently. A tattoo can't be removed easily or painlessly, so committing to a tattoo is serious step. The content of a tattoo is of great significance to the owner of this ink on his body, therefore, it is a message of his true feelings and of what he values to all who see. I imagine that those who opposed the Arizona couple's opening a tattoo shop thought that this practice would be offensive to the community, who were most likely a conservative group. However, just because something may be offensive to one group doesn't make it wrong. Those who favored tattooing were simply continuing to do something that they found enjoyable and that they were talented at. Who are these conservatives that they would suffocate talents and passions? The Arizona Supreme Court was correct in their decision that tattooing is a form of free speech and expression, because the simple act of putting permanent ink into the skin cannot impose beliefs onto others without their consent, therefore, tattooing is not an oppressive form of speech, and should be protected.

10/31/2012
Benson,AZ
Casaundra
Sorenson
Tattoos are a freedom of expression, just like any type of art, and it is an art, because art by definition is "The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination, typically in a visual form". So why should it not be protected? Even the process of Tattooing is part of it being an art, it is just like painting, so why would it matter what the canvas is?

10/31/2012
Benson/AZ
will
Sorensen/Benson
tattoos are like t shirts- are people supposed to tell you what to wear because of the neighborhood you live in? i feel as though the tattoo is a form of protected speach in its purest form. granted i feel that an employer may have the right to ask for it to be concealed in an attempt at professionalism, but nonetheless, i feel there should be no limits on what you have on your skin- If you are a tax paying citizen, you are buying into this government, thus i feel you must be given at least the basic rights outlined in the constitution. It was created for a reason. follow it, and keep government limited

10/30/2012
sidney montana
Lane
Mr fahluber
Tattoos are a expression of ourselves. People dye their hair and paint their nails and that is expression of ourselves, so i don't see how tattooing yourself wouldn't be a form of an expression.

10/30/2012
Sidney/MT
LaShell
Faulhaber/SidneyHighschool
Tattoos are just someone excpressing themselves. Like a story book, they have pictures, words, or symbols that show what and who that person is. to me that should be protected under the 1st amendmeant its freedom of press only its on your body and not published in a book or some sort of magizne. Now i understand why people dont want to higher a man as a waiter if he has a half naked woman running gown his arm or choice words splatterd down his neck. At the same time a mother with her childrens name on her arms, whats so wrong with that? Freedom of speech and press i would say.

10/30/2012
Sidney/Montana
Brandon
Faulhaber/SHS
I think that tattoos are a form of expression because people usually choose tattoos that best represent themselves and what they believe in. It can be a daily reminder for them to keep fighting for what they stand for. I agree with the ruling that tattoos are protected under the First Amendment.

10/30/2012
Sidney/Montana
Zach
Mr. Faulhaber/SHS
I believe that tattoos are protected free speech due to the fact that it is a form of human expression. The content of tattoos should not belimited, for they are protected by the first ammendment.

10/30/2012
Sidney, MT
Justin
Mr. Faulhaber
I beleive that tattoos are a form of expression. With clothing and peircing, tattoos refect the person. Government shouldn't dictate their rights.

10/30/2012
Sidney/MT
Mitch
Faulhaber/SHS
I believe they should be protected. However any employer should be allowed to say that there not appropriate. It is your choice to decide if you want to have innapropriate tattos if you want. Just be ready to take the conciquences.

10/30/2012
Sidney, MT
Marcos
Mr. Faulhaber
Tattoos are a form of expression. It shows what a persons stands for or believes in.

10/30/2012
Sidney Montana
Cody
Mr. Faulhaber Sidney Highschool
I believe tattoos are an art and art is an expression of ones beliefs. A constitutional amendment protects our right to express ourselves in our own way. In that case, I believe that tattoos are able to be interpreted as an expression of ones feelings and beliefs and should be protected as a freedom of speech and expression.

10/30/2012
Sidney
Lacey
Mr. Faulhaber
Tattoos are a form of art and speech once you get a tattoo its your speech that your making to others. Its your body you should have the right to do what you want and there should not be a law against tattoos on your body.

10/30/2012
Sidney, MT
Alec
Faulhaber
Tattoos are absolutely a form of speech, and should be constitutionally protected. These rights should be limited, like all other forms of speech, but it should be considered a form of speech nonetheless.

10/30/2012
Sidney/MT
Taimea B.
Sidney High School/ Mr.Faulhaber
Tattoos are way to express what you believe and are a form of expression. Not all tattoos are appropriate but if you don't like the tatttoo you don't have to look at it. Its the person's body and opinion and not everyone is going to like it but it's not your choice, it's the person's.

10/30/2012
Sidney Montana
Mandi H.
Mr. Faulhaber
In my personal opinion everything to do with tattoos is a personal expression. I am 17 years old and i got my first tattoo this summer in memory of my family members that have passed away recently. And my tattoo is for my benefit only, if someone else notices it then good for them. My tattoo is beautiful and it truely expresses how i felt about my family members. I plan to express myself even more, I can't wait to go and get more tattoos.

10/30/2012
Sidney, MT
Abigail H.
Mr. Faulhaber
I think having tattoos is a form of expression and they show what that person stand for. If someone wants one, let them have it. The should be allowed and protected by the First Amendment.

10/30/2012
Sidney, MT
Dain
Mr. Faulhaber SHS
Tattoos are an art form and a way to express our right to free speech. There will never be a regulation on what someone can or cannot wear( depending on the message provided by it), so I believe the same should go for tattoos. You wear them, they're a form of expression; being able to express yourself is a right no one should be able to take away from you.

10/30/2012
Irving/Tx
Katie D.
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a protected form of expression. However, expression is not the central component of tattoos. At one point, tattoos were all about expression. They were used to memorialize someone who had passed away, or used to keep Christ with them through out the day. Now, everyone wants a tattoo because "everyone has one." I agree with the South Carolina Supreme Court, because they're calling it what it is, they make the point that putting this dye in your body isn't what the First Amendment is all about.

10/28/2012
Irving/Texas
Hannah
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a protected form of expression because they show who the person really is and what they stand for. Tattoos are a component in self expression. The Arizona Supreme Court was right in pointing out that tattoos are a form of free speech and they should not be prohibited from following the First Amendment.

10/26/2012
Benson City
Shane
sorenson benson High School
I think of having tattoos are cool and if people want some tattoos because if like they fall in love with someone and they want there name let them and if like one of your best friends or true friend dies and you want to get to remember them by your heart and love them forever like your family

10/26/2012
benson/az
luis
mr. sorensen/ benson high
i think that having tattoos is part of life and it is part of poeples lifes and also its part of nature and there lifehood we have a right to express our selfs by tattoos.

10/26/2012
Benson/Az
fausto
sorenson
People get tattoos as a way to express themselves. Without them people will feel like their freedom of speech has been taken away. Tattoos are a form of art and no one should interfere with an artists vision. Tattoos are also not harming anyone, it effects the person getting the tattoo and only that person. It is a way for people to symbolize something of meaning in their life,and no one should have the right to take meaning away from someone else's life.

10/26/2012
Benson, AZ
Mason
Sorenson
As Americans,under the First Amendment we have the right to express our opinions. We have the right to represent our expressions not only in verbal ways,but artistic ways as well. Tattoos are a protected form of expression. For many people,tattoos have important or even religious meaning. The act of tattooing is only a small part of the action, because what is actually being inked on to the skin has a bigger significance. The Arizona Supreme Court did make the right decision. I agree with what they stated about tattoos and tattooing being forms of free speech.

10/26/2012
Irving,Texas
Lily
Bradley/Nimitz
As Americans,under the First Amendment we have the right to express our opinions. We have the right to represent our expressions not only in verbal ways,but artistic ways as well. Tattoos are a protected form of expression. For many people,tattoos have important or even religious meaning. The act of tattooing is only a small part of the action, because what is actually being inked on to the skin has a bigger significance. The Arizona Supreme Court did make the right decision. I agree with what they stated about tattoos and tattooing being forms of free speech. They don't have the right to ban tattoo artists from providing their services to others by not allowing them to run their own business. We go to them for tattoos, and shouldn't be penalized for it.

10/24/2012
benson, az
alissa
sorenson/benson
yes because it you can mark your body however even if it is provocative. its a way of expreesing how you feel or things tht are you. its just like if you wanted to p[rotest thts your freedom of speech too just like a tattoo thts something that means to you and show it off in your own way.

10/24/2012
Benson Arizona
Miriam E./Lucy F.
Mr.Sorensen
Tattoos are a form of art and no one should interfere with an artists vision. It is a way for people to symbolize something of meaning in their life and they represent their own person we all have the right to have different unique if that is what we live we shouldnt critize eachother we are all different life would be boring if we would all look and like the same ,and no one should have the right to take meaning away from someone else's life.

10/24/2012
Benson/AZ
A10
Sorenson/Benson
I think that tattoos are a form of expressing yourself. Do i think that they are ok, or are profetional? No because there are many tattoos that are rude, crude and socially unexceptable. Some harm others. For example i do not need to be walking around and see a tattoo of a curse word displayed across someones body. But it is a way of freedom of speech.

10/24/2012
Benson/Arizona
Jonalyn
Mr.Sorenson/ Benson High School
i think that if a person wnat to get a tatto they should be judged on what it looks like it is them expressing themselves and what thye like in a form of art on their body.

10/24/2012
Watertown, MA
Maysa
Mr.Rimas/Watertown High School
People get tattoos as a way to express themselves. Without them people will feel like their freedom of speech has been taken away. Tattoos are a form of art and no one should interfere with an artists vision. Tattoos are also not harming anyone, it effects the person getting the tattoo and only that person. It is a way for people to symbolize something of meaning in their life,and no one should have the right to take meaning away from someone else's life.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Cali
Mr. Rimas/Watertown High School
yes, a tattoo, like talking is your opinion. If you have the right to say what you think and feel then you have the right to mark your body with things that are meaningful to you.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Diora
John Rimas/Watertown High
Tattoos are a protected form of expression because if a person wants a tattoo it's their choice whether or not to get it. Tattoos are a simply way of showing feelings or beliefs. It the individuals choice and rights.

10/24/2012
watertown / ma
Stephanie
mr.rimas/watertown high school
Based on the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States, every human being has the right to own freedom. This means that we have the right to do what ever we want to do with our bodies. Once we turn 18 years old we become adults. When we become adults then we have the freedom to take our own decisions, including whether we want to make a tattoo in our skins or not.

10/24/2012
Watertown, MA
Majda
Mr. Rimas/ Watertown High
i believe that tattoos are a protected form of expression. Tattoos are a form of expression, just like writing a song, or creating a work of art. No one should be able to tell anyone whether or not they can get something tattooed on their body. it's their choice and no one else's. Having multiple tattoos, or even one doesn't make someone a bad person either. i think the Arizona Supreme court made the right decision.

10/24/2012
Watertown/Massachusetts
Arielle
Mr.Rimas/Watertown High School
I think that people should be able to have and get tattoos, its a form of expression and sometimes even art. Simply having a tattoo shop in your town will not have a bad effect on your community, its stereotypical to think that if a person has a tattoo then they are bad.

10/24/2012
Watertown/ MA
Laura G.
Mr. Rimas/ watertown high
There is absolutely nothing wrong with tattooing and person or having tattoos. For many, tattoos are symbolic and are a form of expression for people. The act of tattooing is not illegal so people should not be prohibited from opening a tattoo shop. Although many have negative opinions about tattoos, which they are entitled too, that does not mean others shouldn't be allowed to get tattoos, or tattoo. The right to tattoo should be protected. I agree with the Arizona Supreme Court that tattoos is part of freedom of speech.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Tory
John Rimas/Watertown High School
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression. Tattoos are forms of people expressing themselves, and showing their inner art on the outside. Due to this, I think that tattoos and tattooing are forms of expressing themselves, and should be able to design a tattoo that goes on their own body. However, if a tattoo is offensive to another group or party, they should be protected.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Leah
Mr. Rimas/Watertown High School
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression. I feel as though if they are inappropriate they should be hidden and not seen by the public.

10/24/2012
watertown MA
Wilson
Rimas/Watertown high School
Of course tattoos are a form of free speech. Each person gets a tattoo for their own reason, and tattoos don't hurt others. The Arizona Supreme Court made the correct decision in this case.

10/24/2012
wartertown/ MA
juan
Mr. Rimas/ watertown high
Tattooing is certainly a form of expression! Just take into account some of the things people tattoo on themselves. Religious symbols, pictures and names of loved ones. Freedom of expression should be protected under the Constitution. The Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision as tattooing is a form of art that helps you express yourself.

10/24/2012
Irving/TX
Daniela R
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos, like a person's sense of style, is a form of expression. Honestly, most of the time tattoos are done on a whim, on an intoxicated whim, but sometimes a person will have a sentimental reason for getting a tattoo. I believe the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision, tattoos are free speech and should not be tampered with.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Samantha
Rimas/Watertown
Tattoos are a form of expression. They are also their own art form. The case Coleman vs. City of Mesa, the couple should've been allowed to set up a tattoo parlor. Tattoos don't hurt anyone and are not trying to say anything bad about anyone. It's just art. Also, in the South Carolina Supreme Court case Sate vs. White, I believe that they made the wrong decision. Tattoos are a form of art and should be protected, just like people are trying to protect street art.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Randa I. and Christelle M.
John Rimas/Watertown High School
I think tattoos should be a form of protected expression. Depending on the reasoning of getting a tattoo it could be both a central component of expression, or a small part in action. It depends on the persons' mind of state on why they are getting a tattoo. I agree with Arizona because it is a form of freedom of speech.If you want to get a tattoo, it should be your choice. People nowadays do get tattoos to symbolize matters that mean something to the person.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Anthony R.
Mr. Rimas/Watertown High School
I think that the act of tattooing should be an act of protection from speech. Tattooing expressions, or words on your body should be up to you and no one should tell you what you can and can't put on your body. I think that the Arizona Supreme Court made the right choice in ruling that Tattoos are forms of "Freedom of Speech".

10/24/2012
Watertown, ma
serena q.
reemis
The reason for not allowing this man to open a tattoo shop is completely bias and unfair. It would be one thing if there was simply no space or this shop or if he was a convicted felon etc. but simply passing a cruel judgment on the "kinds of people who get tattoos" is ridiculous and there little to no real logic behind it. I do believe that tattoos are a form of expression and if your delicate eyes cant handle it you can just look away. It is just plain silly.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Geoffrey and Dylan
Rimas/Watertown
I think that the city does have the right to deny where a business wants to set up. Tattoos are a form of freedom of speech i think but the store is a business its trying to make a prohibit that has nothing to do with freedom of speech.

10/24/2012
watertown / ma
anthony
john rimas/watertown high
i have A tattoo and it doesnt make it seem that im a bad person

10/24/2012
Watertown/Massachusetts
Jason
Mr. Rimas/ Watertown High School
Getting a tattoo i think is a form of expression that one should be allowed to get without any ridicule or judgement. It should be a form of protected speech, but there are always people out there that need to shove their opinions down other peoples throats because they believe strongly against body art. Tattoo artists are just that,, artists. They have a specific skill that should be respected, but sometimes mistreated. I believe tattooing and the tattoos themselves are a protected form of expression even though sometimes others can bash the tattoo artist or the tattoo receiver for no other reason than there opinion on tattoos.

10/24/2012
Watertown, Massachusetts
Charlie
Mr. Rimas
I think tattoos are free speech because it's people expressing themselves. However, the city denying the permit to open the tattoo parlor was not a violation of free speech. If it was the federal government saying you couldn't open a tattoo parlor anywhere, different story, but they can just go to a different neighborhood.

10/24/2012
Massachusetts
Alyssa
Rimas
I believe that tattoos are a form of free speech and should be protected. I don't believe the government should have any say in whether or not tattoos are allowed.

10/24/2012
Watertown/Massachusetts
Anas
John Rimas/Watertown High School
In the country we live in today, almost anything is generally accepted as the world as a whole is becoming more and more liberal. We can, believe, express ourselves and any way (to an extent) and not get penalized for it, and that includes body ink.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Brittany
Rimas/Watertown
I think that tattoos are a form of expression, and are therefore protected by the First Amendment. There are people who get tattoos without much thought and just because they like the look of them, but there are also many people who get tattoos because they have a deeper meaning to them personally. Expression is a central part of getting a tattoo because if a person makes the commitment to put ink into their skin to permanently mark themselves, they most likely believe the tattoo is a representation of them.

10/24/2012
Watertown, MA
Nicole
Mr. Rimas/ Watertown High
I feel as though it is your right to tattoo whatever you choose to your body. However, displaying them in public is a different story in certain cases. While most tattoos display your own personal expression some could be considered offensive, especially if they are affiliated with gang symbols, offensive language, or displays vulgarity. You should have the right to get any tattoo you want, but the right to have them displayed in public should be considered by the circumstance.

10/24/2012
Watertown/MA
Vrej
John Rimas/Watertown High School
Personally I believe tattoos are a protected form of expression. Walk up to a person and ask them about their tattoo, I bet you 99% of them will have a story or meaning behind it. Whether it be a symbol of a lost loved one, or even a way to express their interest or likes in art. Sure there are stories of how they got it when they were drunk and it had no meaning, but that is a rare case. Many people interested in art turn to tattoos to express themselves in a permanent and public manner.

10/24/2012
Watertown
Sabrina
Rimas
I think tattoos definitely count as freedom of speech. People usually get tattoos of things that mean something to them. People don't get tattoos for other people, they get them for themselves, so it shouldn't matter to anybody what that person has on their body. If you don't like someone's tattoo, don't look at it! It won't be offensive if you don't see it.

10/24/2012
Watertown MA
Jordan
Rimas
I think that tattoos are a freedom speech the only difference is that its not expressed in words or with posters, flags, protests etc its expressed through art. Tattooing shows how dedicated or how much love a person has for whatever is being put on their body.

10/24/2012
Watertown, MA
Anthony
Rimas
I believe that tattoos can be a form of speech, or expression of a persons beliefs. If somebody wants to get a tattoo it should be their choice, and they should be able to get whatever they want.

10/24/2012
Watertown/Ma
Tammy
Mr. Rimas/Watertown Highschool
I don't think tattoos are really a big issue to me.

10/24/2012
Watertown, ma
Kevin
Rimas/Watertown High School
Tattoos become a part of a person's body and therefore, should be protected by the first amendment. Tattoos are a form of art so expression plays a large role in one's decision to be tattooed. Arizona made the right decision here.

10/24/2012
Watertown
Jessica
John Rimas/Watertown High
Tattoos can be a way to speak out. They can be a way to express yourself and people do have freedom of speech. If they wish to put something on their bodies, that is that persons choice. Though i myself don't necessarily like tattoos, everyone has freedom of speech and unless it is harming someone, no one has a right to tell them otherwise.

10/24/2012
watertown MA
jessica
Rimas
I think tattoo's are a form of protected speech because people express what they believe in whether that be through wording or design.

10/24/2012
Watertown
Amanda
Rimas
I think that tattoos have their own person meaning. Everyone gets a tattoo for their own reason. They are symbolizing stuff in your life and they should be allowed to express whatever they want to. It is your body; and if somebody else doesn't like what you have to say or what you have on your body then they shouldn't look at you.

10/23/2012
Benson AZ
brandon t.
Mr.sorensen/Benson
i thiunk that tattoos are a thing a person put on there perason to tell them what they like and thing they belive in i dont think think that that should be taken away from people i myself wont get them but i dont ahve a prob with other people haveing them as long as it aint dumb

10/23/2012
Irving,Tx
Heather E
Bradley/Nimitz
I think tattoos should be a form of protected expression. Depending on the reasoning of getting a tattoo it could be both a central component of expression, or a small part in action. It merely depends on the persons' mind of state on why they are getting a tattoo. I agree with Arizona because it is a form of free speech. If you want to get a tattoo, it should be your choice, if not then who cares? People nowadays do get tattoos to symbolize matters that mean something to the person.

10/22/2012
Benson/AZ
Brett
Mr.Sorensen/Benson
I think that tattoos could be a form of protected speech. I think that it is rediculous that people make such a big deal about having a tattoo business in a certain town and get denied, possibly based on the belief that the people in that area would go around, inked up with words or some other stuff that others don't agree with. Maybe Arizona Supreme court made the right decision, maybe they didnt. It doesn't concern me one bit though, so i really don't care.

10/22/2012
Benson/ Arizona
Ramiro
mr. sorenson/ Benson high school
yes, tattoos are form of protected speech because the person is expressing what they feel.

10/20/2012
Kirkland/WA
Wing Yun
Kamiakin Middle school
Yes, I think that tattoos are a form of protected speech in different ways. People have tattoos to express their life or their favorite things. Tattoos symbolize a persons' special moment or milestone in their life. I agree with the Arizona Supreme court about their opinion on the tattoos. However, some people just have tattoos to blend in with the"cool people", which is their choice.

10/19/2012
Benson AZ
Justin
Mr. Sorensen
Its a personal thing and i dont think thats right. If people wanted to do it, its their choice. Doesnt matter what they get or what kind of neighborhood it is, they can do it.

10/19/2012
benson AZ
jesse r.
sorenson
usally a tattoos are made for a reason. they can have many meansing and usally are a way for the person to express something. it could be "this is cool" or "i hate my parents" but ethier way you are trying to say something. i would say the supreme court got this one right.

10/19/2012
Benson, AZ
Allyson D./ Katya P.
Mr. Sorenson/ Benson High School
We think that people should be able to tattoo whatever they want on their body because it is their body, and they have the right to express themselves according to the first amendment. We think that tattoo shops should have the right to open anywhere, just like any other business.

10/19/2012
Benson/AZ
Karma
Sorenson/Benson
Tattoos are, without a doubt, a form of expression and consenting adults are responsible for making the decision to place a permanent marking on their body that expresses some kind of meaning. Expression is the primary motivation behind the act of getting a tattoo, and it is an art form to many others.

10/19/2012
Benson, AZ
Dylan B. #5
Mr. Sorenson/Benson High School
Yes, tattoos or the act of tattooing a protected form of expression. And yes, by nature, is expression the central component of the act of tattooing. and i believe the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision. Tattoos, which contain words, messages and art, “may be purely decorative or serve religious, political, or social purposes.”

10/19/2012
Irving/Texas
Vanessa C.
Bradley/Nimitz
When people get tattoos it's mainly because they want to be unique, show ,express their love one or express their style of life or something they like. Tattoos is a form of expressing a special moment in their life and it's a form of art. Every tattoo may have a story behind it and that’s what makes them express them self’s. What Arizona Supreme Court did I agree with them ,because that's a way for people to express them self.

10/18/2012
Irving/Texas
Linda G
Ms. Bradley/Nimitz
I think tattoos are a form of expression. It is a picture on your skin that speaks a thousand words. People choose what tattoo they want because it has a message they want to show to the world. Expression is what a tattoo is all about. because of this, the Arizona Supreme court made the right decision.

10/16/2012
Irving/Texas
Chhering
Bradley/Nimitz
Yes, tattoos are a protected form of expression. I believe tattoo are feeling that people want to show others. Just like the pictures, tattoos speak thousand words. Everyone should have right to have an tattoo. I believe Arizona Supreme Court made a good decision.

10/16/2012
Irving
Martha
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos have been part of many cultures all around the world, it is an work of art imprinted on an individual's body with their full permission and consent. Tattoos, are symbols, every amount of ink that is put on that person's skin, will synthesize into a masterpiece that reveal an emotion, a memory, a dream. The art of tattooing, and the actual tattoo are most definitely forms of expression that are fully protected by the 1st Amendment. I agree with the Arizona court, tattoos are a form a free speech, and the art of tattooing is part of it. The location of the tattoo shop does not influence a person into deciding to get a tattoo, that is the person's own decision. Just as if any other type of business where to be open in that location doesn't mean people around are going to shop there. People in general need to learn to open their minds to new ideas, and styles. Change is something inevitable, that's why you need to learn to either grow with it, embrace it or if the previous aren't possible, respect it.

10/16/2012
Irving/Tx
Hector S.
Bradley/Nimitz
I believe that tattoos are a protected form of expression. It may not be written in the First Amendment but none the less should be protected under the amendment. I feel that people get tattoos to express how the feel, others may do the act knowing that they have to right to do so. I feel that the Arizona Supreme Court was correct in their decision, even though people may see getting a tattoo as wrong, it does not mean that you can take that right from all people.

10/16/2012
Irving/Tx
Jennifer R
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a protected form of expression. People have different ways of expressing themselves and the first amendment gives people the opportunity to express themselves in a liberating way. If people decide that getting tattoos is their way of expressing themselves then others shouldn't try to change that. I side with Arizona because i believe that the Bill of Rights is for the protection of the people and allows the people to have freedom of expression.

10/16/2012
Irving/Tx
Ashley C
Bradley/Nimitz
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression. Tattoos explain how you feel, and what you want the world to know. I believe that tattooing is an expression and that the Arizona Supreme Court did make the right choice. Also, i believe that different states should not have different rules on tattooing because it is a national low that the Arizona Court sided with.

10/16/2012
jefferson mississippi
george
sonia chaple
Tattoos are, without a doubt, a form of expression and consenting adults are responsible for making the decision to place a permanent marking on their body that expresses some kind of meaning. Expression is the primary motivation behind the act of getting a tattoo, and it is an art form to many others.

10/16/2012
Irving Texas
Frankie R
Bradley Nimitz
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression. They let others know what you believe in or what you find interesting. A tattoo is more then just an act, it's a permanent writing or drawing that you are okay with having on your body for the rest of your life. I would have to side with the Arizona Supreme court. Like I said earlier, tattoos have meaning behind them and just because its not in a verbal way makes no difference.

10/15/2012
Irving,Texas
Sona
Bradley Nimitz
Tattoos and act of Tattooing are a form of expression. Whatever it may be, people get tattoos for a reason. Whether it is a positive thing or a negative thing. The 1st amendment guarantees freedom of speech which pretty much means any form of expression whether it is in the form of a tattoo or not. Arizona made the correct decision because it is not up to a federal gov or a state to decide whats considered right and wrong for and individual to do on their body. No where in the Bill of Rights or in the constitution does it say that a person shouldn't have tattoos. They should not be punished for having tattoos.

10/12/2012
irving/tx
cindy m
bradley/nimitz
In my opinion, tattoos are a form of art and a way for a person to express themselves. I do not think its a big deal. A person should have the right to put whatever they want in there bodies as long as there of age.I think it's something very minor and people shouldn't get punishment for it.

10/12/2012
Irving/TX
Marisol
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a protected form of expression, and that is purely expressive activity. When it comes to tattooing, people want to put something permanent on their skins that will symbolize something important to them in their lives. Whether it's an individual getting a tattoo, or the person tattooing, it all falls under expression. An example would be Kat Von D. She's a great tattoo artist, and through her work, she manages to express herself in other people's skins, and on her own skin. All over her body, you will find all sorts of tattoos, and many of her tattoos mean something to her. It can be said she has a lot of expression on her. When someone gets a tattoo, he or she wants the world to see it, and although the meaning behind it won't always be understood, it gives the owner the chance to feel like everything has been said through just a tattoo. I strongly feel that the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision. Even though tattoos can't “speak,” it's safe to say that tattoos are worth a thousand words.

10/12/2012
Irving, TX
Julio
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos and the act of tattooing are a form of expression protected by the 1st amendment because unlike a speech a tattoo is a form of art that expresses peoples point of view in many things. The act of tattooing is merely a small part of the action, because the design that is actually being put on the skin has a bigger role in all of it. I say the state of Arizona made the correct decision because tattooing is not a state or national choice but someone's own choice and people shouldn't be penalized for having one.

10/12/2012
Irving, TX
Julio
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos and the act of tattooing are a form of expression protected by the 1st amendment because unlike a speech a tattoo is a form of art that expresses peoples point of view in many things. The act of tattooing is merely a small part of the action, because the design that is actually being put on the skin has a bigger role in all of it. I say the state of Arizona made the correct decision because tattooing is not a state or national choice but someone's own choice and people shouldn't be penalized for having one.

10/12/2012
Irving/TX
Kenia R
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos and tattooing are protected under a form of protective expression because people get tattoos for different reasons whether its artistic or religious or creative. The act of tattooing is just a small part of the action because the ink is not being put on you, they are just doing the deed. I believe the Arizona court made the right decision in allowing tattoos.

10/12/2012
Irving/TX
Kristian
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos and the act of tattooing are a form of protected expression. The act of tattooing is merely a small art of the action, because what is actually being put on the skin plays a bigger role. The Arizona Supreme Court did make the right decision. I side with Arizona's Supreme Court because tattooing is someone's own choice. Tattooing doesn't not put a threat on our country and it can mean a great deal to the person getting tattooed. Tattooing is not a state or national choice and people shouldn't be penalized or looked down on for having or creating that art.

10/12/2012
Irving/Tx
Rebecca M.
MS. Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are a form of expression and when people get them they know the tattoos are for life. Most people want to get tattoos to get a message across. You can't deny someone a tattoo because its a freedom of speech and most people get tattoos to express their feelings. I agree with Arizona that tattoos are a “forms of free speech.”

10/9/2012
Irving, TX
Sandra
Bradley/Nimitz
Tattoos are definitely forms of expression. If a person can't say or show something they obviously look for different methods of expressing their ideas. The Arizona Supreme Court made the correct decision because tattoos are in my opinion a form of speech. They might not be said in words but in symbols.

10/5/2012
Irving/TX
Jessica H
Bradley/Nimitz
People get tattoos for many reasons whether they be religious, artistic, or any other reason. For many this form as expression is a form of beautiful art that they can portray on their body and being granted the right of self expression, not only in the form of speech but also of tattooing, is important to them. Therefore, they should be protected by the First Amendment. In the case of Coleman v. City of Mesa, I believe the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision in allowing tattoos as a way of expression.

10/5/2012
Irving, TX
Chibueze
Austin/JESA
Tattoos and tattooing are forms of expression. However, I think that expression is only a small part of the action. I agree with the decision that the Arizona Supreme Court made: tattoos and tattooing are forms of free speech.

10/5/2012
Irving/Texas
Rafael
Austin/JESA
Tattoos are a form of expression because people get tattoos to express themselves or have something tattooed that stands for something that they believe in. I believe that the Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision because the freedom of expressing yourself any way you want including getting something tattooed on your body is protected by the First Amendment. To finalize my point, The Arizona Supreme Court did make the right decision but and it also shows to the public that everybody has the same freedom of speech protection and are eligible to stand for what they believe in.

10/5/2012
Irving, Tx
Sabrina
Austin/JESA
Tattoos are, without a doubt, a form of expression and consenting adults are responsible for making the decision to place a permanent marking on their body that expresses some kind of meaning. Expression is the primary motivation behind the act of getting a tattoo, and it is an art form to many others. I believe that the Arizona Supreme court was absolutely correct in making the decision that they did, the Colemans had every right to open their parlor.

10/5/2012
Irving/Texas
Carlos
Austin/JESA
Tattoos as many believe, are a sign of the "devil" but people don't stop to think about other people's understanding of the freedom of speech and freedom of expression. I do believe tattooing is a form of "Art" that comes by nature to many who are gifted with that talent. I side with the supreme court of South Carolina due to having family members that express what they are feeling by getting a tattoo or painting a beautiful portrait and the the state of Arizona should re-visit the amendment and look for a better understanding of freedom of speech that allows people to express their feelings in any form that they are capable of doing so. We all have different opinions but tattooing is not a bad thing.

10/5/2012
Irving, Texas
Angel
Austin/JESA
Tattoos are used as a way to express one's self and beliefs. In the first amendment it states that the people have a freedom of speech and it never specified what type of speech it could be. The people know that a tattoos will stay with them for the rest of their lives so people generally put something that they firmly believe in.

10/5/2012
Irving/TX
Mayra P Zamora
Bradley/Nimitz
I believe that tattoos are a way of expressing themselves and I believe this right should be protected because people do express themselves with the tattoos. I really do believe that tattoo's central component is to express themselves because we all know tattoos can't be taken off easily, it is something we have to be sure to get and people wont get tattoos just to have them. Most people usually use tattoos because they want to send out a message, either by putting someone's name, a symbol/picture, or some quote that shows the meaning of their life. I agree with the court that allowed them to get tattoos because they really are a form of speech to tell the people their stories or what they believe in. Tattoos are permanent and when people get them they know their going to be in their body for life like a scar, unless they find a way to take them off.Tattoos are also a form of how they can be creative with art if some people put random tattoos is because they believe the art of tattoos is beautiful for them it's something no one can deny.I do believe the first amendment should protect the right to tattoo as a form of speech.

10/4/2012
Irving, TX
Kelsey
Bradley, Nimitz High School
Tattoos are a form of expression and people who get tattoos understand that they are permanent. Which actually inspires people to put something they firmly believe in tattooed on their body. To say the tattoo parlor the Coleman couple wanted was “not appropriate for the location or in the best interest of the neighborhood,” was a form of censorship. Besides tattooing is considered an art. Telling the Coleman couple they were not allowed to have their tattoo parlor is the same thing as telling a painter he or she was not allowed to paint. Just like paintings tattoos represent more than what you see.

10/3/2012
Irving, Tx
Cristina
Austin/JESA
Tattoos are a form of expression protected under the First Amendment. It's a form of art where people are allowed to express what they feel, beliefs and what they represent. The Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision as tattoos is a form of art that helps you express yourself so I approve of the court's decision.

10/3/2012
Irving, TX
Daniela
Austin/JESA
I think that tattoos or the act of tattooing are a form of expression. Many people get tattoos because they want to express themselves or get a message across. Meaning that expression is the central component for the art of tattooing. I also think that Arizona Supreme Court did make a great decision.

10/3/2012
Irving, TX
Kasey
Austin/JESA
I believe that tattoos are a form of expression and should be protected. They are the same as creating a piece of art or writing a piece, it is just a process that goes farther and makes it permanent on some ones body rather than say a piece of paper. I agree with the court ruling that it is to be protected by the first amendment.

10/3/2012
Irving/Texas
Ricky
Austin/JESA
In my opinion i think it is a form of protected freedom of speech because its a art in which people are allowed to express what they feel, and what they think is right. Its a free form of expression that the state dint have a right to say that people couldn't do just because it dint fit with what they where trying to represent in that county.

10/3/2012
Irving/ TX
Amber P
Bradley/ Nimitz
Tattooing is certainly a form of expression! Just take into account some of the things people tattoo on themselves. Religious symbols, pictures and names of loved ones. Freedom of expression should be protected under the Constitution. The Arizona Supreme Court made the right decision as tattooing is a form of art that helps you express yourself.

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