In many cultures around the world, a man is not truly considered to have achieved manhood until he grows a beard. American missionaries and special forces soldiers have acknowledged and adapted accordingly to this reality, as a beard may simply be a necessary element of professional attire in some circumstances.
As our culture here in the homeland becomes increasingly diverse, our law enforcement officers are increasingly exposed to other cultures as well. It may be time for Maryland to review state policies for police officers’ facial hair. While a professional and well-groomed appearance is a must in all situations for our male law enforcement personnel, a baby-faced police officer simply may not garner the same respect from all cultural perspectives.