My President and First Lady are so gangsta, particularly when it comes to Sasha and Malia and any ideas the First Daughters may have had about getting tattoos: apparently, the two have been informed that if they’re looking to get a little body ink, it’ll totally be a family affair, replete with matching tats for everybody and a YouTube video to show them off to the entire world.
In a cute one-on-one interview with the Today show’s Savannah Guthrie, President Obama joked that their each-one-get-one strategy seems like the perfectly logical way to keep their daughters, ages 14 and 11, from getting inked sans permission.
“What we’ve said is, “if you guys ever decided you’re going to get a tattoo, then mommy and me will get the exact same tattoo, in the same place. And we’ll go on YouTube and show it off as a family tattoo,'” the president laughed. “And our thinking is that might dissuade them from thinking that somehow that’s a good way to rebel.”
Of course, when we were growing up, you were a total badass if you had body ink—and even more of an outlier (or a sailor or a rock star) if the public could actually see it. These days, though, it seems like everyone from the 16-year-old cheerleader to the 40-year-old businessman to the 80-year-old grandma is rocking tats like it ain’t a thang. Heck, one of the more popular reality shows on TV is Black Ink, the chronicling of a black-owned tattoo shop smack dab in the middle of Harlem. (Full disclosure: I seriously love that show. Like, if I wasn’t such a pain punk, I’d totally let Dutchess hook me up a pretty little hummingbird somewhere discreet, or a fancy, script “love” on my wrist. Alas, not enough brown liquor on the planet could ready me for that torture.)
My 13-year-old is so anxious to get one she uses marker to draw a different symbol or word on her hand daily. But ain’t no way she’s getting a tattoo on my watch. She knows full well I can’t threaten her with the, “if you get one, I’ll get one that matches” thing because, well, see the last paragraph. The closest I’ll ever get to one is a little Henna stain—aka tattoos for people ike me who fear needles more than, like, birth. Still, when it comes to the girlpie, I think I’m fighting against inevitability here. My only prayer is that it doesn’t show when she wears a gown to an elegant event, or her patients don’t get freaked out when they see it on the way to the operating room or she owns her own successful company and doesn’t have to worry about what the boss thinks about it because, well, she’ll be in charge.
Fun times, though, to get a glimpse into the humor The Obamas express as they parent Sasha and Malia out loud and in the eyes of the entire world. I think they’ll grow up to be lovely, tattoo ink or no. Check out President Obama’s comments about his parenting, his dancing and Michelle’s accidental “I’m a single mom” proclamation in the video below.
1. Envying Malia and Sasha’s Dad—What I Would Give for a Secret Service Detail For My Girls
2. The Obamas On Easter Sunday: Sasha and Malia Remind Me How Far I’ve Fallen As A Mother
3. Fatherhood: Talib Kweli Says He Regrets Missing His Daughters Birth In New Book On Dads
4. A Special MyBrownBaby Love Letter To Black Fathers Getting It Right
Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.