Author Archives: helengrove

Jews with Tattoos

Next time you place judgment on your old Sunday School friend who decided to get inked in college, or find it oxymoronic that your friend’s father has a Jewish star tattooed on his forearm, think again. The New York Times published an article this week on tattooed Jews, playfully titled For Some Jews, It Only Sounds Like ‘Taboo.’

The story blows the lid on a myth that has been incorporated into mainstream culture and allowed decades of parents and grandparents to condemn tattoos with the threat of exclusion from the family burial plot.

Josh Starr, a Maryland resident and a Junior at Stanford University, has always wanted a tattoo but feared religious and familial consequences. “Growing up, my parents always told me that if I got a tattoo I wouldn’t be buried in a Jewish cemetery. I guess I just accepted what they told me, I never thought to look into it.” Now that Josh and other young Jewish hipsters have read the article-don’t be surprised if you see more tattooed Jews. Continue reading