According to a media source, a 26-year-old Sikh-American officer in the US Marines who has been authorized to wear the turban – the first person in the 246-year history of the elite unit to do so – wants to sue the Corps if he is not given complete religious accommodation.

For the past five years, First Lieutenant Sukhbir Toor has put on the uniform of the United States Marine Corps almost every morning. He also got to try on the turban of a devout Sikh on Thursday, according to a New York Times story.

According to the New York Times, Lt. Toor’s turban is a first in the Marine Corps’ 246-year existence, which has nearly never tolerated departures from its revered image.

“Finally, I don’t have to choose between my faith and my nation when it comes to my life. I can be myself while honoring both sides “In an interview, Lt. Toor stated.

wearing turban
wearing turban

Lt.Toor chose to challenge his promotion to Captain this spring

According to the New York Times, Lt. Toor’s case is the latest in a long-running battle in the US military between two fundamental values: “the heritage of discipline and uniformity, and the constitutional rights the armed services were established to preserve.”

Lt. Toor, who grew up in Washington and Ohio and is the son of Indian immigrants, has been granted limited permission to wear the Turban while on duty. “I can wear a turban in everyday clothing at routine duty stations,” he says, “but not while deployed to a combat zone or in dress uniform in a ceremonial unit where the public may see it.”

According to the New York Times, Lt. Toor has appealed the limited decision to the Marine Corps commander, and he has threatened to sue the Corps if he does not receive a complete accommodation.

“We’ve gone a great way,” he remarked in the New York Times storey, “but there’s still a long way to go.” “The Marine Corps must demonstrate that it truly believes in the power of diversity, that it doesn’t matter what you look like as long as you can perform your job.”

“Uniformity was as important to a combat force as well-oiled weapons,” the Corps has maintained.

In written comments to The Times on Lt. Toor’s case, Col. Kelly Frushour, a spokeswoman for Marine Headquarters, stated, “In order to develop squads that will go ahead in a combat scenario where people are dying, a strong team bond is essential.” “One of the techniques the Corps employs to build that relationship is uniformity. The Corps’ capacity to triumph on the battlefield ensures that the Constitution remains the supreme law of the nation.”

The request for Lt. Toor to wear the turban reached the “highest Marine Corps authority.”

According to the article, their initial answer in June was basically a denial of his request.

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