A Dream in Doubt

Guest blogged by Mewa Singh

This evening I had the opportunity to view a screening of a new documentary on the tragedy and heroism of the Sodhi Family. From the website of A Dream in Doubt comes the synopsis:

A Dream in Doubt is an immigrant story in a world in which patriotism has morphed into murder. When Rana Singh Sodhis brother is killed in Americas first post-9/11 revenge murder, he begins a journey to reclaim his American dream and fight the hate that continues to threaten his community. This intimate, hour-long documentary of one mans odyssey from persecution in India to embracing America as his homeland proves that courage and hope have the power to overcome hate.

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The film centers around Rana Singh Sodhis Sikh faith and perseverance to claim a part of America that other seek to deny him. These are the sources of his immense strength. Despite personal tragedy, the story of this family is compelling and moving. It is the subject matter of the documentary that will capture your attention.

While the films purpose was to focus on how Rana Singh Sodhi has coped and found strength, I do believe that the film could have even been more effective had it actually delved deeper into the Sodhis family experience as a mirror of America.

Balbir Singh Sodhis name has been etched in the minds of a generation of Sikh-Americans. He is our communitys Vincent Chin. Balbir Singh Sodhis memory has both galvanized and been pimped by many members of our community. However, a real tragedy in our community, I believe, is the little importance we pay to his younger brother, Sukhpal Singh Sodhis death in the Bay Area. While in some way we understand Balbir Singh Sodhis senseless death, as a community, we do not make such effort to understand Sukhpal Singhs. Many of us may not have even heard of Sukhpal Singh Sodhi. However, in so many ways, Sukhpal Singhs tragic death highlights the high-risk employment that many in our community must take, the problem of gang violence and poverty in our inner cities, and our communitys silence and apathy for these problems.

A Dream in Doubt will be premiered on national television on PBS as part of the Independent Lens series on Tuesday, May 20th. Check your local PBS affiliate for time and date.

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