Natural News // African-American Lawmakers Challenge New Army Regulations on Natural Hair

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African-American lawmakers are urging the Army to reconsider their new regulations on hair styles, citing the rules as discriminatory toward soldiers with natural hair. Recently, the Army issued regulations against twists, afros, buns above a certain size, and locs while in terms same breath allowing weaves of all types and effectively limiting natural soldiers to cornrows or a big chop. For more on the topic, read the full story here.

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One thought on “Natural News // African-American Lawmakers Challenge New Army Regulations on Natural Hair

  1. This isn’t just the Army. It’s all branches of service. I’m prior Navy and when I was in I decided to make my transition to natural while in boot. I caught hell from the male higher ups (only petty officers and sadly only the white guys) for not straightening my hair. And yes, some would flat out tell me to straighten it and stop trying to be empowering or an individual. One even went so far as to come from across the way to shove a regs sheet in my face, read off the “2 inches” bit to me and tell me my hair was out of regs…even though my hair was perfectly IN regs and so was my bun. He just didn’t like the fact that it wasn’t slick to my head and had the slightest amount of puff to it. However, the bulk was nowhere NEAR two inches. After I explained to him my hair was in regs and that it was just like that because I had natural hair, he suggested that I straighten it to make myself prettier and “look less like a cotton ball”. I just about lost it but my female shipmates came to my defense and threatened a discrimination claim. He backed off. If he hadn’t, I would have gladly taken an NJP for giving him a piece of my mind and not felt bad about it, either.

    But yes, in the service black women are highly discriminated against by their hair. However, we have to have regulations for our uniforms and that is understandable. In fact, I welcome it because you wouldn’t believe the things women try. No super out-of-control Shaka Khan hair, no hair that touches the collar, no extremely long braids, twists, etc., no multicolored hair or faddish colored hair (i.e. blues, pinks, purples, etc), no super large buns that look like radioactive mutant donuts…basically, nothing that would take away from the appearance of your uniform. However, they do go too far with the regulations sometimes. There are ways to get around the hair regs though while in uniform and one of them is to stand up and speak out about it. It took me going to my chief and her giving me a good earful of knowledge before I found that out. We just have to find ways to keep our hair in regs and after a little experimenting, I did just that. Even though I had natural hair, my hair looked darn good both in uniform and out! ;D

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