Are People with Tattoos Violent?

Body art is increasingly popular, but there remains a stereotype that people with tattoos are violent. Unfortunately, we still hear news of people like that.

Last June, in Brooklyn, US, Matthew Karelefsky was arrested in a fire that destroyed Rabbi Jonathan Max’s house and two other buildings. Karelefsky’s tattoo read: “Never let go of the HATRED — KILL Rabbi Max.”

Karelefsky’s online posts accused the rabbi of sexually abusing him when he was a child. However, Rabbi Max said that they met when Karelefsky was already married. He blamed the rabbi for the end of his marriage and threatened to kill him.

Is it true that tattooed people are aggressive? There’s a correlation, a study by Professor Viren Swami from Anglia Ruskin University, UK said.

Tattooed people were found to have much higher levels of aggression than those without. Professor Swami said that it might be because people who are more aggressive might get tattoos as a response to frustrating events.

However, the validity of the study remains to be seen. And it’s quite obvious that Karelefsky is an extreme case. So, are tattooed people really more violent? Until the study is proven, let’s not believe the stereotype about tattoos.