1974 January 7

Free Exercise of Religion Protects Sikh Solider Wearing Turban


A federal court on this day acquitted an Army soldier, Pfc. Walter McNair, charged with wearing a turban while on military duty, citing the Free Exercise clause of the First Amendment. McNair and another soldier had converted to the Sikh religion while serving in Germany. The two were also charged with wearing long hair and beards. The Army had convicted them, sentenced them to three months at hard labor, and given them general discharges.

Learn more about the free exercise of religion: https://www.au.org/

And more about religion and the Bill of Rights: http://www.firstamendmentcenter.org/category/religion

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