…the rights of men with facial hair, with the help of its annual Beard Week. The aim of this fuzzy festival is to champion the home-grown facial fashion item and end beard discrimination.
A story in The Independent reported on the week’s Hirsute Personality 2013 award, which went to folk singer and political songwriter Billy Bragg. Close contenders for the title were Brian Blessed and Stephen Fry.
Various other awards were due to be handed out over the course of the week, including the Beard of the Year.
I was fascinated to read in the article that there is actually a word for beard bigotry: pogonophobia.
Apparently, Keith Flett set up the Beard Liberation Front in 1995 because he felt there was a deliberate lack of facial hair in New Labour.
He told The Independent: “I won’t stop until we see more hirsute people at the top of society, in business and politics.
“We’re still waiting for the first hirsute BBC TV newsreader, which I would see as a benchmark for beards.”
He added that in his experience, bearded men often suffer abuse in public with chants of “oi, beardy!”
It all seems a tiny bit ridiculous to me. Surely the fact that this organisation exists, along with its appreciation week and awards, just holds bearded men up to ridicule?
After all, we don’t have a Curly Hair Tribute Week or a Big It Up For Bald Men Month….or do we?