Protecting the right to serve God and country

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Ryan Colby 202-349-7219 media@becketlaw.org

April 30, 2015, The Hill

But these steps still fall short. For instance, Sikhs attending the Pentagon’s Vaisakhi Celebration must leave their religiously-mandated kirpans behind, despite passing Pentagon security clearances. (Kirpans are small ceremonial blades that can be shorter and duller than a butter knife. My firm, the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, recently won a case where the IRS fired a Sikh woman for wearing her kirpan.) And Sikhs are still presumptively barred from the military because the new regulations require them to shave their beards before their accommodation requests will even be considered—meaning that they must violate their faith to try to protect it.