A bearded US Military soldier who worships Thor, the Norse god of thunder, is being permitted to maintain his beard as a part of the navy’s effort to be extra religiously accommodating.
In 2017, the Military determined to permit troopers to put on a turban, beard or hijab for non secular causes. Initially, non secular lodging of facial hair within the Military appeared to be directed at Sikh service members (beards are a non secular requirement for male Sikhs).
Now, nonetheless, it seems this new coverage additionally permits adherents of the Norse pagan religion, also referred to as heathens, to maintain their beards. Not like Sikhs, Norse pagans will not be required to put on beards as a part of their religion, however facial hair is outwardly inspired.
A memo written by commander Col. Curtis Shroedero to a 795th Navy Police Battalion soldier who reportedly made the request acknowledged, “I grant your lodging, topic to the requirements and limitations described beneath.”
The memo, which has been shared round on Fb however doesn’t embody the soldier’s identify, went on to say, “In observance of your Heathen; Norse Pagan religion, chances are you’ll put on a beard, in accordance with Military uniform and grooming requirements for troopers with accredited non secular lodging.”
The authenticity of the memo was confirmed by a Fort Leonard Wooden, Missouri, spokeswoman to the Military Instances.
The navy’s prohibition of beards largely dates again to World Struggle I and the introduction of chemical warfare. Troopers had been now not permitted to put on beards as a result of they bought in the way in which of gasoline masks. This coverage has developed over time, and a few particular operations troopers who’ve served within the Center East have been allowed to develop beards with the intention to mix in with native populations.
Not everybody within the navy is keen on the brand new coverage towards beards. In January, Command Sgt. Maj. John Troxell, the senior enlisted adviser to the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Employees, stated he believed beards are a distraction and a “gimmick.”