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Petitioning Adm. John Richardson

Professional and Regulated Beards for the US Navy

by Trevor Amos July 12, 2018

12.075 NEEDED

TARGET 20.000 SIGNATURES 7.925 supporters
Nearly every other Military Service worldwide is authorized to wear a beard. With the CNO authorizing females to wear their hair in pony tails while in uniform, we're that much closer to having our beards back as well. A very short beard style (If they insist on being conservative) would look more professional than someone with the unfortunate neck pimples and ingrown hairs resultant of the daily shave. Facial hair can look professional, if done right, and it would increase the potential for new recruits.  To prove my point, look at the number of people who were able to join due to the new tattoo policy.

Recruiting Numbers Would Skyrocket. Since 2004 the search term “how to grow a beard” has grown exponentially while searches for “US Navy enlistment” have gone from low to microscopic in Google. Millennials love beards and the Navy needs Millennials. We are never going to offer office sleeping pods or unlimited vacation days but we do offer many of the same perks as top Silicon Valley tech companies. Free health care? Check. Onsite chefs? Some of the finest. Travel perks? We have them in spades. So why is it still so hard to recruit in this day and age? Part of the answer lies in the bare chins of boatswain mates around the world.

Strong Traditions. Sailors have beards. There has been a long tradition of sailors wearing beards. Every time I pass by a portrait of Joshua James I am reminded of that fact. Woe unto anyone who calls Joshua James unprofessional for having a beard. Commander Harold Wood and Lieutenant Charles Cowing had beards as they commanded their cutters in the first successful U.S.-led navigation of the Northwest Passage. Marcus Hanna had a beard when he earned the Gold Lifesaving medal at the Pemaquid Point Light. Richard Etheridge had a beard as he saved countless lives at station Pea Island. Sailors have beards. In 1986 we stopped over 200 years of tradition.

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