When William Kidd of Kansas City, Kan., saw he could help protect human rights by getting another tattoo Sunday, he knew what he had to do.
“It’s another opportunity to get a tattoo,” Kidd said. “And it’s also a good cause.”
On Sunday, the Mercy Seat Tattoo shop in the Crossroads district of Kansas City held a benefit for the ACLU where people could choose from a menu of $50, $100 and $150 tattoos. All of the money collected was being donated to the American Civil Liberties Union.
“There are eight of us here tattooing, which is basically our entire staff,” said Mikey Wheeler, a tattooer with Mercy Seat Tattoo. “It’s an all-hands-on-deck kind of thing.”
Wheeler said the Mercy Seat’s staff wanted to do something for the community and bring the community together to support a unifying cause.
“We kinda considered a few different options as far as a charity or a benefit was concerned and decided the ACLU was an organization that put resources to very productive and very positive use — simply protecting the rights of everybody, even individuals we might not agree with,” Wheeler said.
Everyone has their rights, and they need to be looked after, Wheeler said.
“The fact that the ACLU focuses on simply that is something we all could get behind,” Wheeler said. “It seemed like a good opportunity for us all to hang out, do tattoos and have fun with the community.”
The idea for the fundraiser was prompted by recent events in the political climate, although Wheeler wouldn’t specify which events.
Jay Fuller of Kansas City showed up before the noon start of the benefit and was surprised by how many people had the same idea.
“We didn’t think that the line would fill up as fast as it did, but it got down the block pretty fast,” Fuller said. “I wasn’t expecting that many people to be here.”
The price was right and the cause was good, Fuller said.
“They are fighting for the rights of everybody, and that’s important to me,” Fuller said. “They make sure rights don’t get eroded.”