What's with the judgement?

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

A middle-aged woman and her teen-aged daughter came into the Shop.  The girl did nothing but roll her eyes and make the occasional 'Love that!' or 'Hate that!' drawling statement to whatever item her mother was drooling over indecisively.

The teens lack of vocals was somewhat balanced by the incessant nattering of her mother, most of which did not revolve around what sort of jewellery she was looking for.  I can't even recall if it was something for herself or a gift for someone.

What stuck in my mind most about her was her objection to the daughter of a friend.  'She's going to university to do something arty!'  This was said with a look of grave confusion.  Then, in a half whisper, 'She wants to be a tattooist!'  Eyes wide and staring, she nods knowingly in that "yes-isn't-it-shameful!?" mannerism of the ignorant.

This kind of attitude really gets my back up.  I was extremely tempted to say 'My brother is a tattooist.'  Or something to that affect.  Yes, that would be a fib; no member of my family is employed as a tattoo artist, but what exactly is wrong with being one?

If this young woman wants to use her artistic talents in that way then more power to her.  I've seen some utterly amazing tattoo artworks; it takes someone very skilled to produce high quality art so good luck to her.

What gets me is why this woman even considered the idea that it was perfectly acceptable to berate this girl's personal decision to total strangers who potentially won't agree with her narrow-minded point of view.  Ok, if you don't like tattoos, fair enough - no one ever said we all have to like the same thing - but for goodness sake, don't go around berating people that do like them or want to work in the industry! No one is forcing you to partake!

Why do people feel the need to judge others based on their job or job aspirations?  Why are some deemed 'worthy' of respect and others not?   I've been looked down upon for working in retail, as an admin assistant and a cleaner.  Does that mean I don't do anything of importance or that I'm lacking some magical element that will make everyone respect what I do?

I've often thought to myself that when I eventually start a family, I'll encourage my children to work in whatever profession that makes them happy. Funnily enough, the idea of a tattoo artist comes up in my imaginary speech of 'You could be a tattoo artist and I wouldn't mind - so long as you're happy, I'll be happy!'

Honestly, regardless of what career choice you make, what right does anyone else have to look down their nose at you?   If it's what you want and you are happy doing it, good for you!


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