Abdulkadir Omar was fired from his job as a security guard with American Patriot Security for not shaving his beard back in 2010. He is now suing the company for emotional damages and 65 hours worth of unpaid wages. Omar says that he had the beard when they hired him and that no one ever told him that he would have to shave his beard to work there. He also says that it wasn't until he asked a supervising manager about wages he had not received that he was told to shave his beard in order to work there.
Omar is a Muslim and keeps his beard neatly trimmed as part of his religious faith. He believes that his termination violated the Civil Rights Act which requires employers to accommodate the religious practices of employees unless it creates an unreasonable burden on the employer. Omar feels that American Patriot violated his Constitutional right to freedom of religion because his beard had nothing to do with his job.
This story appears similar to an incident that took place in 1992 when Don Mattingly was fired from his job as a first baseman for the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant softball team because the team's owner Montgomery Burns didn't like his sideburns. The only difference in that case was that Mattingly made an effort to shave his sideburns, but didn't trim them enough to satisfy Mr. Burns.