Wednesday, January 5, 2011

A Bearded ARMY?

I kid you not, the US ARMY is now going to allow the growth of facial to certain religious groups while in uniform. I'd like to know why they just can conform to the standards set forth.  See the article: US ARMY: Beard Exception.

I figure that once you sign on that dotted line you have decided that you are willing to conform to all set standards.  Why are some men allowed to have beards just because of their religious principles and others are not?  Is it truly fair?  I think not.  The Orthodox Jews are being denied their right to have beards.  Heck, the rest of the males in the US ARMY aren't allowed to grow beards either.

Do they even realize that if they have a beard the gas mask isn't going to get a tight seal?  Or how about the flammability of the beard?  Years ago when my husband had a beard, it was quite long over the winter, he was trying to get his truck started and the flash from the starter fluid spray can actually caught a small bit of his beard singeing it.  It could have been a lot worse.  What happens to these bearded army men when they get caught in a fire?  I've seen photos of what burnt skin and hair looks like on the face.  Its not pretty.

I wonder if they even thought about the hygienic issues in maintaining  a beard.  I mean seriously food does get caught in the beard.  As the face sweats the bacteria will grow on the hair and if not kept clean it could be a real issue.

I really don't like the thought of a beard on an Army guy.  Okay a five o'clock shadow is sexy but a full beard in uniform just looks so unprofessional. 

This is my opinion.  Please feel free to share with me what you think as well.


  1. I'm with you! What are they thinking?? My husband is Navy and I couldn't agree with you more.

  2. (1)Our Army serves in areas where beards are necessary in order to build Rapport with the local nationals. I myself had a beard while in Afghanistan(with a relaxed grooming standards memorandum), not for religious reasons but for operational reasons.
    (2)Gas masks are not used or needed anymore. Never did any Battalion I served with bring a gas mask with them, not even on week long missions many miles away from the base.
    (3)flammability of the beard? That falls under common sense, enough said.
    (4)As far as "hygienic issues" go, Just take care of yourself like a grown man should. Even on missions that last over a week, you can still wash yourself. And if there are hygienic issues at home with your family, you need to take a shower. it's really not that hard.
    (5)You say "A full beard in uniform just looks so unprofessional" What we do is far more important than what we look like. Do you think all women in the Army should shave their heads? Because all that long hair just looks so unprofessional (Equal opportunity)
    Hope this was helpful.

    P.S. Tracey. Did you know in the Navy there's an elite group of people Known as the SEALS, and they all have beards.

  3. I do love to get comments from my readers but I must say that I have to disagree with a few from time to time because, 1) I have my own opinions and 2) facts are facts.

    1) I realize that our Army does serve in regions where beards can be deemed necessary by certain elite forces however, the vast majority of the Army populous does not need to have a beard just to be deployed in combat situations in the Middle East.

    2) Its true they don't use "gas masks" any longer since they are now restructured and called Pro Masks. My error in the name. I have fibromyalgia and sometimes forget the correct words. However, pro masks are indeed still used by the majority of the Army on training missions as my spouse is still required to pack his and use his and had a "gas chamber" event earlier this year.

    3) Not everyone is the brightest crayon in the box and some folks do burn their beards. Remember the actor that played the main character in Grizzly Adams television show? He burned his beard to the skin in places. Enough said.

    4) Lice does not discriminate on if you had a bath before bed or when waking up. It does like to attach itself to the hair shafts and lay eggs.

    5)I do think that women should be required to shave their heads. It is a uniform and equal army and should look uniform down the line when head cover is not worn.

    Remember these are my opinions. I value the honesty and opinions of all my readers. Feel free to comment. I do love to hear what others have to say.


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