Healthcare

My Body, My Choice of Ink: DFW Tattoo Parlor Offers Special Tattoos to Protest Abortion Ruling

These are just some of the designs you'll be able to get on Aug. 8 at the Diamond Tattoo Parlor in Hurst. Half of the proceeds will go to the Bedford Planned Parenthood clinic.
These are just some of the designs you'll be able to get on Aug. 8 at the Diamond Tattoo Parlor in Hurst. Half of the proceeds will go to the Bedford Planned Parenthood clinic. courtesy Diamond Tattoo Parlor
We may have known for some time that Roe v. Wade was on its way out with the appointment of anti-choice justices Neil Gorsuch, Amy Coney Barrett and Brett Kavanaugh, but no one could've prepared for the day it inevitably happened.

The majority of the public disagreed with the recent overturning on Roe v. Wade, and the ruling has prompted national protests, an uptick in vasectomies and tube-tying.

"The main talking point about 'Oh, you're going to kill babies and abortion,' it's about what you choose to do with your own body," says Paula Diamond, the owner of the Diamond Tattoo Parlor in Hurst. For now, choosing to get a tattoo is still legal and Diamond's tattoo parlor has come up with a fitting way for people to protest the Supreme Court's decision.

The Diamond Tattoo Parlor, located in the Artisan Theater Square in Hurst, is offering a special series of pro-women and pro-choice protest tattoos on Monday, Aug. 8. Half of the proceeds raised from this one-day sale will be donated to the Bedford Planned Parenthood clinic.

"We're an all-female shop, and this affects us kind of directly," Diamond says. "It's not just about the abortion thing. This affects medical privacy, body autonomy, the whole thing. Over the years, we've tried to do charitable things. My daughter uses Planned Parenthood, and we wanted to kind of do something to help make an actual difference."

Guests can choose one or more of over 40 tattoos designed by artists Diamond, Jamie Moon and Elsie Pime depicting pro-women and pro-choice sayings and images. They range from simple designs like a Valentine's Day heart-shaped candy with the word "CHOICE" to far less subtle stuff like bloody coat hangers and a uterus giving the middle finger with its "fallopian hand."

"It was something we thought we could do to help make a difference, especially with the way things are going now," Diamond says. "One of my friends called her doctor who was going to set her up with an IUD and now they're not going to give her an IUD."

Some designs also represent other issues affected by the ruling, such as a green carnation — a subversive symbol for gay rights made famous by writer Oscar Wilde.

click to enlarge
The Diamond Tattoo Parlor in Hurst owned by artist Paula Diamond is run primarily by women.
Ambar Rivera Rodriguez
Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in his concurring opinion to the ruling that the C\court should reconsider "all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence and Obergefell," referring to landmark cases that established Constitutional rights to marital privacy and overturned laws that made the act of consensual sodomy and same-sex marriages illegal.

"If this is where they're starting," Diamond says, "what's next?"

Diamond Tattoo Parlor announced its special sale on Facebook last Saturday and the massive response has been overwhelmingly positive and supportive.

"There was a few more but anything that's been hateful, this is not your platform," Diamond says. "You can find somewhere else to protest."

The daylong tattoo special offers ink costing between $50-$100 and will run all day until 8 p.m. or "how physically capable we are that night because we've got a lot of tattoos."

Guests do not need a reservation but can expect to wait if they're not among the first in line. Cash or credit and debit cards may be used, but a convenience charge will be added to card payments so the artists don't have to wait to get paid for their work.

A registrar will also be at the tattoo parlor helping visitors register to vote because, Diamond says, "we can't incite real change without voting."

Tattoos are a perfect metaphor for protesting the Supreme Court's abortion ruling because it involves making choices about our own bodies, the tattoo artist says.

"Some are more discreet and some are a little more in your face," Diamond says. "Again, it goes back to your body. We figured this was a good way to show support and help make a difference and choose sides." 
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Danny Gallagher has been a regular contributor to the Dallas Observer since 2014. He has also written features, essays and stories for MTV, the Chicago Tribune, Maxim, Cracked, Mental_Floss, The Week, CNET and The Onion AV Club.