The owner of the most awesome beard on campus at Charleston Southern University got canned after his picture was used by a local brewery. Paul Roof, a professor of sociology, says officials at the small Christian university complained after a picture of him taken by a professional photographer at a beard competition appeared on "Chucktown Follicle Brown" beer cans. (School officials' displeasure apparently wasn't assuaged by the brewery's name: Holy City Brewing.) "I'm not compensated for the image, I don't own the image, and the use of the image was a surprise to me," the professor tells News 2, which notes Roof learned the photo of his four-section beard would be used on the can once production had already started.
The professor says he was told having his image on a beer can "was not representative of a Christian environment," but for him, "a Christian environment entails two things: looking out for other people and forgiveness of others who've transgressed you." The beard picture has been used elsewhere—including for the promotion of Christian services—and as a sociologist, "the diverse areas where the image appears makes it a great educational tool," Roof writes on his Facebook page. The professor tells WCRC that he has received "overwhelming" support from friends and former students since the firing and he'll give the university credit for one thing: "They never discriminated against me in terms of having a beard." (Read more beard stories.)