Tattoo parenting, Obama-style
April 24th, 2013
12:12 PM ET
5 years ago

Tattoo parenting, Obama-style

(CNN) - President Barack Obama says he and the first lady have a good strategy to prevent their daughters from getting tattoos.

"What we've said to the girls is, if you guys ever decide 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," he said in an interview that aired Wednesday on NBC's "Today."

He said his daughters, Sasha and Malia, have kept him "posted on what's cool and what's not," but argued he and Michelle know how to make things look not so cool.

Their tattoo threat, for example, is a good tactic to "dissuade them from thinking that that's somehow a good way to rebel," he said.

The president also answered a question about the first lady's recent slip-up in which she described herself a "single mother" during a television interview earlier this month.

"As somebody who has stumbled over my lines many times, I tend to cut my wife or anybody some slack when it comes to just some slips of the tongue," he said. "But there's no doubt there were times where Michelle probably felt like a single mom."

When he campaigned for the Senate and White House, he said he would often be gone for a week at one time.

"She was still working and having to look after the girls. She definitely, I think, understands the burdens that women in part tend to feel if they're both responsible for child-rearing and if they're responsible for working at the same time."

- CNN's Ashley Killough contributed to this report.

Filed under: Malia Obama • Michelle Obama • President Obama • Sasha Obama
soundoff (91 Responses)
  1. P G Williams

    "Ye shall not...print any marks upon you: I AM THE LORD (Leviticus 19: 28) "Sanctify youselves therefore, and be ye Holy: for I AM THE LORD YOUR GOD" (Leviticus 20: 7) BLESSINGS – if you Obey GOD; A CURSE- if you disobey –
    (Deuteronomy 12: 26-28)

    April 24, 2013 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  2. JMorcan

    "he and Michelle know how to make things look not so cool."

    Understatement of the year.

    April 24, 2013 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  3. deho

    I was going through mid-life crisis when I got mine (45yrs old)'s very small and not that noticable...I couldn't buy a sports car, so I got the tat...No regrets

    April 24, 2013 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  4. KimH

    That's the problem with threats like these. The kids are savvy enough to know they won't do it.

    April 24, 2013 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  5. Richard Long

    I will pay for Sasha's and Malia's tattoos if they get 'tramp stamps'. If Barack would keep his word, he'd have to get one too.
    Hey wait a second... I'll end up paying for it anyways... plus the Secret Service protection, the tattoo artist screening, etc.

    April 24, 2013 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  6. P G Williams

    "And we'll go on YouTube and show it off" – No one should 'show off' their shame, instead of asking God to forgive them

    April 24, 2013 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  7. Fred

    A woman or girl getting a tattoo is like putting a bumper sticker on a BMW. Don't break your skin. Just saying.

    April 24, 2013 02:17 pm at 2:17 pm |
  8. T

    I say they should call his bluff. President Obama would look hip with a tramp stamp or face tattoo!

    April 24, 2013 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  9. Data Driven

    Yeah, Deuteronomy is really relevant here. (rolls eyes)

    April 24, 2013 02:20 pm at 2:20 pm |
  10. 2012liberal

    Watch out prez obama may have 2 eat those words some day. Dont put anything past young adults. Lol. Grt sense of humor.

    April 24, 2013 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  11. jerpell

    Obama treats his girls like he treats everyone else,...Like dirt!

    April 24, 2013 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  12. Trevor Bryant of Flagstaff, AZ

    I call BS on that. I got two words for you Obama: Face tattoo. Whoa, called your bluff huh? Don't make a threat unless you can and will follow through 100%.

    April 24, 2013 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  13. JonfromLI

    Here we go again with the bashing of the Obama family values. Because we all remember the Norman Rockwell-esque family portraits of W with the twins.

    April 24, 2013 02:29 pm at 2:29 pm |
  14. mysimru

    I'm sure that they know he doesn't follow through on anything he says or promises.

    April 24, 2013 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  15. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Ever hear of fake ID's? They have pretty good ones out there. But even worse, the constant whining, and badgering and, heaven forbid, "All of my friends are getting one...".
    They'll have you screaming into the night I tell ya, SCREAMING into the night. Freaking kids! LOL!

    April 24, 2013 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  16. ME

    @St Xavier.....the problem with liberals is that is not possible to live and let live, they must control every aspect or our lives!!!

    April 24, 2013 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  17. burbanktj

    i laughed, pretty cool parenting if you ask me. then again i'm a 31 year-old single dude who knows nothing about being a parent.

    April 24, 2013 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  18. Barry Obama, NJ, US

    the celebrity President.

    April 24, 2013 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    "And we'll go on YouTube and show it off" – No one should 'show off' their shame, instead of asking God to forgive them
    HEY!!! Moses!! Come down off the mountain.
    We're having fun here! Relax, it's not that serious babe. Come on now!

    April 24, 2013 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  20. george

    We have to PASS THE BILL before we can read it...sure DUMMY!

    April 24, 2013 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  21. patrickwilliams1976

    PG Williams, try to keep your religious beliefs to yourself. No one on the forum asked for them. We all are not required to follow your religious ideals, nor does the president and his family. Get over the Old Testament! There have been so many scholars and researchers who have acknowledged that the Bible is a collection of works hand chosen to dictate the beliefs of the simple minded. In the USA, I am free to worship or not worship as I choose without the fear of persecution from fanatics like you. Stop being a bully. This is why politics and religion should and will never overlap.

    April 24, 2013 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  22. ME

    @Gary....100% agreed, I have a sleeve on one arm and one on my other forearm and I am in the business world make more than 6 figures a year. To all the tattoo haters, tattoos are a work of art and if you don't like them don't get one but please open your mind and stop being so ignorant!!! Some civilizations have been doing tattoos for thousands of years, in some cultures, the more you have the higher status you have!!!!

    April 24, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  23. moconnor21

    My question is what's wrong with them getting a tattoo? It isn't necessarily a sign of rebelling against anything. Most people with tattoos are perfectly respectable people and most are professionals. Tattoos are a work of art.

    April 24, 2013 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  24. rena

    As a parent Obama should be able to use any tactic he wants to prevent his kids from doing something they might regret. Adults they an make that choice. What I think is bad about this article is that it assumes that there is a negative personal around getting a tattoo. I have 2, one i got when i was 19 and the other a much larger one at 25. I love my tattoos. They are personal art i carry with me everyday. I don't care what you think of them, if they bother you don't look. I am embarrassed for you that your mother never taught you that it was rude to stare. And also to judge people on how they look.I am a working professional and make a six figure salary not a whore or drug addict or any number of negative titles that people attach to those with tattoos. This is not news, news is what is going on in the world not how our president chooses to interact with his daughters. Also come on people let's leave religion out of this people make there own choices as do you. I believe the bible also said "do to others what you would have them do to you" (matthew 7:12) So lets give people a break.

    April 24, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  25. Wake up People!


    So the tattoos are the reason a grown man murdered a child in cold blood? You sir are pathetic and exactly what's wrong with this country.

    April 24, 2013 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
1 2 3 4