The Orthodox Jewish man who was kicked out of the police academy for refusing to trim his beard now has the Council on American-Islamic Relations in his corner.
As The Blaze previously reported, Fishel Litzman was just weeks away from becoming a New York City police officer when he was booted from the program Friday over the length of his beard, which he doesn’t cut for religious reasons. Now, the controversial organization’s New York chapter is calling for him to be reinstated.
“We urge the NYPD to reinstate Mr. Litzman and to work out a reasonable compromise that protects his religious rights and those of other officers while maintaining good order and discipline in the ranks,” Cyrus McGoldrick, the organization’s civil rights manager, said in a statement.
NYPD rules require officers to be clean-shaven, but will allow beards up to one millimeter in length for religious purposes.
According to CAIR, the organization is fighting a similar case involving a Muslim NYPD officer facing disciplinary action over his beard as well.
An NYPD spokesman told the Associated Press said Litzman was aware of the rules when he signed up, while an attorney for Litzman said the department knew when he applied that he would not trim his beard.
In February, CAIR slammed the New York Post for a cartoon that it said evoked “anti-Semitic themes” for depicting terrorists with hooked noses objecting to the NYPD’s warrantless surveillance of Muslims.