A tattoo parlor that has been stuck since mid-March under Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s (D) stringent lockdown order has decided he’s reopening. Overnight the shop booked “hundreds” of appointments despite being order to remain closed.
Sick Ink Studios, located in Pennsylvania’s Lehigh County, is located in one of the 18 counties still under a stay at home order that has been in place since mid-March. Last week, Wolf threatened any business that opens calling them cowards.
Hundreds of customers booked appointments that will keep the tattoo parlor busy for months; a few even did so in person, entering the shop one at a time,” the Morning Call reported.
“It appears to be about us, but it’s not about us. It’s about all the people that reached out to me to tell me they’re losing everything — everything hard they ever worked for,” owner Jesse Probus said in a May 15 video explaining his decision.
“It’s not that I don’t care that people are dying. But it’s also about survival and all the hard work that we have put into everything,” he continued, noting that many small businesses have lost so much that they no longer possess the ability to reopen.
Probus said he understands what may happen to him if he stays open.
“You can do whatever you want to me. I understand all my consequences of my actions,” he continued. “It’s just something I have to do. It’s just something I have to do to help myself.”
“It’s something that I have to do to help other small business owners. Maybe they’ll stand up with me. Maybe they’ll come join me tomorrow,” he said.
“I feel like my civil liberties are threatened with all this that’s going on,” he continued, adding that he will no longer live in fear.
“It’s just not something I’m going to do anymore,” he added.
Friends and other small business owners gathered outside his shop on Saturday to support his decision to open.
“I feel backed by all my friends, but Pennsylvanians are still scared of this governor,” he said.