As Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) was out on the campaign trail, one of her supporters went under the needle to show her love of the presidential candidate.
Jaedyn Brockway, a first-year student at Iowa State University, told HuffPost on Saturday that the idea was spurred by her encounter with Harris at the Polk County Steak Fry in Des Moines, where nearly all of the crowded field of 2020 Democrats appeared last month.
Brockway, a Harris campaign volunteer, was meeting the candidate for the first time when she took the opportunity to speak to her about gun violence, which concerned her both in high school and now at college.
“She heard me out and she made me feel like I wasn’t alone,” Brockway said. “In that interaction I was crying hardcore and she was like, ‘It’s a sign of strength to show emotion.’”
From that moment on, Brockway said she realized, “That’s smart. It is.”
“I should never feel ashamed of crying over something that matters so much to me.”
In a call to action on gun control, Harris shared a video of their conversation on Twitter.
"I just don't want to die." Leaders in Congress who fail to have the courage to act on gun violence are traumatizing an entire generation of students. pic.twitter.com/JMWrg9SSKD
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) September 23, 2019
During a subsequent stop at a Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America event, Brockway asked Harris to jot down the phrase on a slip of paper.
“She wrote it down and then I called every tattoo shop in Ames to see who could take a walk-in,” Brockway said. Within an hour, it was on her arm.
Last week, when Harris returned to Des Moines, Brockway showed off her new ink, announcing to the candidate, “I got you tattooed!”
“Oh, dear Lord,” Harris said. “Oh, my God. You did! That’s my handwriting!
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 18, 2019
It’s a sign of strength to show emotion. These words echoed loud at the steak fry when I met @KamalaHarris for the first time. Now I get to carry these words with me for the rest of my life. Thank you Kamala for spending time with @MomsDemand. #ForThePeople #IACaucus pic.twitter.com/m9t0EUa1Zx
— j (@jaedyn01_) October 8, 2019
“I wasn’t nervous ― it was more just like a surreal moment,” Brockway said of the big reveal. “I got to show my idol.”