What I found on arabnews.com
Is wearing a beard obligatory or a Sunnah? If a young man is told by his parents not to wear a beard, some scholars advise that he must pay no attention to their request. In a certain case I know, the father has threatened to cut off all relations with his son if he wears a beard. Please comment.
Some scholars maintain that wearing a beard is obligatory for all Muslim men. However, there is little solid evidence to support this view, which is based on a very restrictive interpretation of a particular Hadith. There is no doubt that the Hadith is authentic. However, it allows for a more sound and easier interpretation, particularly when taken in conjunction with other similar Hadiths relating to a Muslimís appearance and body care. In fact the maximum that should be said about wearing a beard is that it is a Sunnah, or recommended by the Prophet (peace be upon him). This means that it is something that we do to increase our reward, but its omission does not involve disobedience to God or His messenger, nor does it incur any punishment.
When a young man is of an age to have a beard, he is responsible for performing his Islamic duties. No one should interfere with him, more than giving advice and encouragement to fulfil his duties and to add whatever he can of recommended practices. The same applies to young women. Similarly, no one should interfere so as to prevent such young men and women from doing their Islamic duties. Such fulfilment of duties is a personal obligation.
Having said that, one should look at each case in its own circumstances. One should ask why the parents in this case are taking such a hard attitude when the matter is one of personal choice. It could be the influence that is gripping our world today, with the onslaught on Islam from various quarters. The criticism leveled at the so-called Islamic fundamentalism and the repetitive association between Islam and terrorism in the world media have made young Muslims suspect in many countries. Wearing a beard features highly in such suspicions.
It may be that the parents in this case are worried lest their son should be taken on suspicion. If so, their point of view should be taken very seriously. Unfortunately, even in a number of Muslim countries, wearing a beard has become a symbol of extremism.
Therefore, young Muslim men should consider their position carefully. If they remain clean-shaven in order to avoid being labelled by hostile authorities, this may take preference over the performance of the Sunnah of wearing a beard. Similarly, if a young man feels that he could present a more acceptable image of Islam by remaining clean-shaven, this option should be seriously considered.
What is stated above is true for sure. I'm not a suspicious person at all, and when I see someone with a beard I'm not afraid as well. But still I see myself looking twice at some persons wearing some form of a beard (varying from the small Indonesian 'few hairs' to big 'Taliban'-like beards.
'Taliban-like', another media-related term in this matter, but everyone knows what I mean with this. So I suggest I'm not the only one that just sometimes looks twice, when realising it's just not needed to do that.
Tell me... who does look twice just sometimes?