Tattoo Shops Removes Racist Ink For Free To Give People A Second Chance

Tattoos are permanent and they’re a badge you wear for the rest of your life

But what if you regret them? Maybe you were young, or forced into a position that you didn’t want to be in, and you needed to show that kind of commitment? What then?

This story starts with Dave Cutlip of Southside Tattoo and one day a man came into his parlour to ask his face tattoo to be removed. It was going to be a costly procedure, and he had gotten it while he was in prison to show allegiance to a crowd. He would have gotten hurt badly otherwise.

It started because someone came in and asked me to remove gang tattoos from their face. I could see the hurt. But to be honest, I couldn’t help them.”

“But while he’s on his job, people are following him around because he still kind of looks like a gangster.”

He wanted to give them this chance at a second life for free. So he set up a GoFundMe for it.

It immediately went viral. Three hours later, there were already 7,000 people who liked it. We never expected anything to go viral. I just figured it was going to be a couple people in Baltimore.”

“Removing a baseball-sized swastika — you’re looking at $1,000-$2,000 to get it removed, minimum, with lasers,”

They themselves did the hard work. They actually made the decision to change.”

It’s actually made me a better artist,”

“I never thought something like that would come out of this.”

The media has asked me what is the most memorable removal I’ve worked on,”

“To be honest, they’ve all been that memorable. All of these people, I don’t believe they were racist to begin with.”

“I believe they did what they had to survive at the place they were at that time in their life.”

After his GoFundMe raised $21,000 Cutlip decided to set an even more ambitious goal of $60,000

He did it so that he could open up tattoo parlours to help people grow out of their mistakes

And it succeeded. There is one in Shelton, Connecticut, and another in Greece.

All images courtesy of Southside Tattoo

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