Karate Thoughts Blog

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I recently wrote that My Daughter Models. Friday she went for an audition for a Japanese clients. She mentioned to me afterward that the client was very careful to make sure that potential models had no tatoos or body piercings. Here in the United States, tatoos are very common and even some young people have them.

However, in Japan, tatoos were the mark of criminals. People with tatoos were looked down upon. A person with a tatoo, for example, could not bathe in a public bathhouse.

Even today, a tatoo carries negative connotations in Japan, so much so, that it is relevant in modeling auditions.

I am relating this in case any readers are going to Japan or Okinawa to practice Karate. If you have visible tatoos, you should be aware that older people in particular may react negatively (even if they don't say anything). I think that the prejudice is even stronger against women with tatoos.

Personally, I think some tatoos are pretty cool, but I am too conservative and chicken to get one. Also, I have this fear that if I got a tatoo, there would some defect with it and it would drive me crazy for the rest of my life.

Also, my wife got three little dots tatooed on her chest when she was undergoing radiation treatment for breast cancer. They were to help target the beam of radiation. In my family, she was the first to get one!

For any children reading this blog, I am not suggesting that you get tatoos. This is something you should discuss with your parents.


Charles C. Goodin