You aren’t a real man until your beard is soaked in blood

Welp, I’ve read the worst response to the Gillette commercial so far. It’s written by a person claiming to be a veteran and law enforcement officer (now that’s scary), and is illustrated with a photo of a tattooed man with a huge black beard. It’s full of hyper-violent fantasies and textbook toxic masculinity.

I first grew my beard when I was in the Sandbox. I can’t tell you who I was with over there, because technically the government still owns that part of my life.

I was the guy that assholes feared. You know why they feared me? Because I hunted down bad guys. And I killed them. My beard has been covered with the blood of terrorists more times than I can count.

My beard has also been covered with the blood of my brothers. The day the IED when off and I was one of only a handful of guys that made it out with all of our limbs.

The day a sniper took out the man who stood next to me on the best day of my life, my wedding day… and then stood in front of me when he took a bullet so I could one day go back to my bride.

I don’t believe any of it. The veterans I’ve known who have seen combat come back changed by a horrific experience and are reluctant to talk about it — I think this fellow has come back from some cartoonish Hollywood movies. He’s extraordinarily obsessed with his beard and killing people, yet he calls those Middle Eastern terrorists he hates bearded bastards without noticing the irony. He ends his improbable rant with the hashtags #BeardUpAmerica #GunsOutBeardsOut…as if a face full of hair is synonymous with manliness, while equating beards and guns.

I really don’t want to think this blustering poseur is actually carrying the responsibility of law enforcement.

He also makes me want to shave, but I refuse to be manipulated by a commercial, and even more refuse to have that kind of reaction to that idiot.


  1. voidhawk says

    I thought beards were banned in the US Armed Forces?

    “Males will keep their face clean-shaven when in uniform or in civilian clothes on duty. Mustaches are permitted… Handlebar mustaches, goatees, and beards are not authorized.”

  2. prostheticconscience says

    Voidhawk@1 is correct, with the exception of religious accommodations – though I doubt this guy is a Sikh or a Jewish chaplain.

    This reads like that Navy Seal copypasta, and deserves to be taken about as seriously.

  3. Saad says

    Nope. Sounds too much like a movie.

    Also for a ultra macho alpha squared male dudebro, he sure got offended pretty easily by a commercial with a nice pro-men message.

  4. davidnangle says

    I liked the part where he knelt by his partner, who was on his last day of duty before retirement, and screamed at the sky, “Mendoza!” And the part where he screwed explosive tips onto his arrows and blew up the helicopter. Man, I almost spilled my popcorn when he did that!

  5. kagy says

    A quick google search on the image from the article shows its stock source. I also poked around in their submission guidelines and found that pretty much as long as you can verify who you are, and that you work somewhere in law enforcement to them, you can publish almost anything anonymously.

  6. Sean Boyd says

    Seems to me that having one’s beard soaked in blood would make a damn good reason to 1) find a new line of work that doesn’t involve soaking one’s hair in blood; and 2) shave.

    Also, his battle buddy stood in front of him to take a bullet from a sniper? So there’s a sniper known in the area, and he was just standing around? This guy is more Forrest Gump than Rambo. By the way, fella, Rambo didn’t have a beard. So, checkmate.

  7. voidhawk says

    Sean Boyd @10,

    I wondered about the sniper story, too. Did he get shot, then deliberately take another bullet?

  8. eleanor says

    Appropriately enough, one of the meanings of “beard” is a person who takes on a false identity for financially or socially manipulative purposes.

  9. davidnangle says

    voidhawk: that’s how the story comes out. Additionally, I understood that it actually happened at the wedding. It’s a bad venue when there’s snipers around.

  10. voidhawk says

    I mean, usually, when someone says “Does anybody have any objections…” usually a simply ‘Yes’ is sufficient, but I suppose a rifle bullet carries the point more… forcefully?

  11. doubtthat says

    This guy seems to be having trouble disengaging from his Witcher 3 playthrough.

    And for fuck’s sake, in 2019, we’re still calling people in Iraq, Afghanistan, and/or Syria, “terrorists”?

  12. Akira MacKenzie says

    I started growing a beard because I was too lazy to shave one week and thought the result fit my face rather well. Grunting, sweating, raging machoism had nothing to do with it.

  13. ardipithecus says

    He missed the ‘the’; as in under ‘the’ covers cop, afraid to come out and face the real world.

  14. Akira MacKenzie says

    voidhawk @ 1

    From the amount of Googling I’ve done, it seems that they relaxed that regulation for Special Forces in Afghanistan on the grounds that the beards help them interact with the local population.

  15. a_ray_in_dilbert_space says

    OK, the guy is compensating for all sorts of inadequacies, but, hey, you should see his Canadian girlfriend!

  16. nomadiq says

    This ‘Game of Thrones – Zero Dark Thirty’ crossover will never work. So many plot holes. Everyone has beards so you can’t tell who the enemy is. Everyone believes all men are already the best and don’t need to change.

    Perhaps a neat plot twist is called for. Our author realizes that he has more in common with elements of his enemy so they team up to fight the ‘libtards’ at home and abroad. They fail, simply because that level of sophistication isn’t associated with winning.

  17. numerobis says

    On the flip side, hidden within hundreds of comments on the relevant arstechnica thread, a couple of veterans point out how these guidelines are targeted right at them — combat vets who delayed PTSD treatment because of toxic masculinity — and how they are grateful for them.

  18. Akira MacKenzie says

    …combat vets who delayed PTSD treatment because of toxic masculinity…

    If “prophet” Mark Taylor is any indication, some firefighters turned Bible-beating Trump-boosters have a similar issue.

  19. davidc1 says

    By the sandbox ,does he mean he started growing a beard in nursery school ?
    I love his supposed name Sgt A Merica .

  20. woozy says

    Posted by Sgt. A. Merica

    Who is Sgt. A. Merica? He is YOU. He is US.Law Enforcement Today is the voice of police officers across America and their supporters. Unfortunately, many of our officers can’t have a voice because they’d face the chance they’d lose their job. We are their voice.LEOs and their supporters can submit articles to Law Enforcement Today. Once we verify their identity and background, we post the content anonymously to protect them, while still giving them a platform to share their stories.We have a private email address set up that goes directly to our Founder for these stories. Send them to

    So… he is an acknowledged fiction.

    And this is an op-ed piece by an acknowledged fiction. … And we are supposed to be persuaded?

    I really don’t understand the mindset of the others at all. I really don’t.

  21. woozy says

    The logic of this op-ed piece is:

    Gillette make razors.

    Razors are for the ridding of beards.

    The ad is opposed to “toxic masculity”

    Hence the commercial is claiming beards are responsible for toxic masculinity.


    Somedays I regret trading in my old satire meter for a newer model 20 years ago. This would have been such good satire by the standards of my youth… Now…. nothing.

  22. says

    In most cases if you’re getting terrorist blood in your beard you’re Special Forcing it wrong. It indicates you’re at touching distance when you killed someone, which shouldn’t be happening much at all in the 21st Century. And in those very rare cases where it makes sense to get that close your technique is probably bad if the baddy is squirting blood into your face.

  23. pocketnerd says

    I first grew my beard when I was in the Sandbox. I can’t tell you who I was with over there, because technically the government still owns that part of my life.


    I was there, jackass, and it didn’t work like that. You’re spouting bafflegab to impress the clueless, like claiming you needed to register your hands as lethal weapons. So my guess is you’re trying to inflate a REMF position to sound important and macho, or more likely, you never served a day in uniform at all. So you can take your chickenhawk bombast and shove it right up your ass.

  24. says

    “The day the IED when off and I was one of only a handful of guys that made it out with all of our limbs.” Pity he took one to the head instead.

  25. says

    “The day the IED when off and I was one of only a handful of guys that made it out with all of our limbs.”

    I remember seeing that on the news. They had to evacuate Toys R Us and TGI Fridays.

  26. John Morales says

    I always have a beard, but a lot of the time it is shaven and so not apparent. But it’s there nonetheless, alas.

    (I want that magic depilation cream without side-effects that you can put on your face so that all its hair comes off and does not regrow until you put the antidote cream back on (however long that may be), whenceupon its growth resumes. Until that happens, I’ll consider our tech primitive)

  27. christoph says

    I think this site is a parody, kind of like All the cliches in the story are just too perfect. Either that, or the writer is trolling the website.

  28. wzrd1 says

    @19, beards were permitted for Special Forces personnel in Afghanistan for the reason you stated, but they had to be kept short, trimmed and well kempt.

    I did grow a rather generous beard after I retired, made for quite a Santa for the kids in the villa compound and for a rather well received Surly Claus on the base I worked on. Surly, because I would rather be curled up with Mrs Claus and I was instead stuck there in 85 degree heat with my “uniform” being part of the spiel.

    During that period, I managed to get blood in my beard. Bad nosebleed, lost around a pint of blood. Nothing to brag or want to remember, as it took a lot of work to clean up. Both the bathroom and my beard and mustache.
    Once it warmed up enough to be uncomfortable, it was me and the straight razor time. Kept a long goatee, long enough to tow the neighbor’s children across the pool with.
    That eventually had to go, when it was too hot for the pool, which also started getting uncomfortably hot.

  29. wzrd1 says

    Oh, if anyone is interested in reading what real soldiers sound like, just read the quotes in this story.
    I knew nearly all of the deceased men extremely well, a man where I work and I reminisced about Kurt Kraut quite fondly.
    He told me of when the unit was waiting for transportation and in down time, how Kurt had imbibed a 30 pack of beer and was out cold in his chair, with a half beer unspilled and resting on his stomach and he had called to his buddies (returning from a bar in town) that “Looks like Kraut won’t be making it to formation in the morning”. I predicted that he was there bright eyed and bushy tailed, which was accurate.

    The bomber that hit Kurt’s group was eventually captured. His and an accomplice had their trial in Bowling Green, Kentucky, so you can imagine what kind of way I felt with Trump’s idiot brigade went on about the “Bowling Green Massacre”!