Sikhi, Literature and Film Conference at Hofstra University

This weekend, from Friday to Sunday October 19-21st, the Sikh Studies department at Hofstra University will host’Sikhi(sm), Literature and Film,’ a conference on literary and visual cultures in the Sikh tradition, both in Panjab and the Diaspora.

Paper presentations will be given during five sessions, with presentations ranging from de-categorizing the janamsakhis to the poetry of Puran Singh, discourses on secularism to literary representations of Sikhs, Sikh masculine identity vis--vis kesh and the dastaar to Panjabi theater, Museum exhibitions to Sikh identity in film and Bollywood, Hip Hop and rap as expressive forms among Panjabi youth to Gurbani sangeet and femalekirtaniya. Presentation topics and bios can be accessed via the Sikh Studies website at Hofstra.

This year the conference will also host two supplementary film screenings and offer a forum to deepen the discourse around the recent Oak Creek Massacre. The films include Safina Uberois Gurdwara: the Gurus Portal: a door to document Truth and Harjant Gills Roots of Love, while the pieces related to Oak Creek include Dr. Nikhil Pal Singhs Remainders of White Supremacy,’ and Dr. Balbinder Singh Bhogals Oak Creek Killings: The Denial of a culture of oppression (which can be read online).

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Indian Government representatives at Sikh Events

Guest blog by:Rocco

sany.jpgOne of the highlights of fall in NYC is the Sikh Arts and Film Festival which showcases the story of our community via films and is being held November 2-3, 2012. Along with that is a Heritage Gala which is being held November 3, 2012 to celebrate the rich heritage, culture and traditions of the Sikhs. In the past dignitaries and business leaders have been selected as Chief Guest and Guest of Honors. Unfortunately, The Chief Guest this year is Nirupama Rao, India’s Ambassador to the United States and the Guest of Honors include Prabhu Dayal, Consul General India, New York and Hardeep Puri, India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

For some, Sikhs having Indian Government representatives as honorees poses no conflict and should be encouraged. One may argue that the attack on Darbar Sahib and Genocide in 1984 are distant events that occurred twenty eight years ago and should be forgotten. One may argue that the civil war which ensued for ten years afterwards in Panjab and led to the death of the tens of thousands of Sikh youth were collateral damage and justifiable in order to preserve the unity of India. One may argue that that struggle for an independent Panjab has reached its nadir and its important to re-Indianize ourselves and take advantage of the current economic environment.

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Celebrating Indigenous Survival & Resistance, Not Columbus

Today is a federal holiday here in the United States — Columbus Day. Many of you probably share my disdain for the continued celebration of a man who helped kick off the colonization of the Americas and the genocide of indigenous peoples over 500 years ago, just as Guru Nanak was laying the groundwork for Sikhi to be born in Punjab. Gloating about his relentless pillaging, Columbus once stated, “I ought to be judged as a captain who for such a long time up to this day has borne arms without laying them aside for an hour.”

We Sikhs are truth-seekers and freedom fighters. Let’s stand with indigenous people throughout the Americas today, mourning those millions whose lives were taken by Columbus and the European colonizers who came after, and celebrating the spirit of resistance and quest for sovereignty which persist today throughout Turtle Island.


How SikhISM became a peaceful Religion

brar.jpegYesterdays news about the attack on KS Brar has excited, angered, inspired, and agitated many Sikhs throughout the world.

Many have questioned the Indian medias initial assumption, before even the facts had arrived. Still others are wondering if the news is even factual. I have seen numerous postings on social media, believing that the attack was just a fabrication in order to make Sikhs appear violent and extreme, especially after the recent goodwill expressed by some channels in the US and abroad after the recent Wisconsin Massacre. Finally, our brothers and sisters at Naujawani have written an intriguing articleasking larger questions about a more sinister timing of all events (though not sure if I agree, well worth a read!).

I believe that the case of Kulbir Singh Barapind and Daljit Singh Bittu is extremely important, but that warrants a separate post. I will return to that issue at a future time.

Personally I am quite surprised that no names have appeared yet, as I figure someone would probably take credit and I wouldnt imagine the names could be held a secret for too long within the community, especially if those that confronted him were young, as the claim is being made. Still I think that I want to take this conversation in a different direction. How do we present SikhISM and its implicationsi?

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Tracking Hate Crimes, Tracking the FBI’s Crimes

Over the last month since the horrific tragedy in Oak Creek, WI, Sikh civil rights organizations and other leaders in the community seem to have come to a consensus on what our collective demand should be to move forward — getting the FBI to track hate crimes against Sikhs. A few weeks ago Valarie Kaur wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post entitled, “Sikhs deserve the dignity of being a statistic,” in which she convincingly articulates the basic argument that many are making:

The FBI tracks all hate crimes on Form 1-699, the Hate Crime Incident Report. Statistics collected on this form allow law enforcement officials to analyze trends in hate crimes and allocate resources appropriately. But under the FBIs current tracking system, there is no category for anti-Sikh hate crimes. The religious identity of the eight people shot in Oak Creek will not appear as a statistic in the FBIs data collection. As a Sikh American who hears the rising fear and concerns in my community, I join the Sikh Coalition and Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF) in calling for the FBI to change its policy and track hate crimes against Sikhs.

We’ve all probably gotten numerous action alerts to sign petitions, call our Senators, and, most recently, to attend tomorrow’s Senate hearing on hate violence in Washington, DC. The Sikh Coalition’s email advisory today about tomorrow’s hearing begins, “Be Present and Request that the FBI Track Hate Crimes Against Sikhs.”

It seems like a sensible request. The FBI is a government agency responsible for investigating hate crimes, so of course they should be looking specifically at attacks targeting Sikhs and have a category to enable them to do so. While I am sympathetic to this cause, I am a bit troubled by it, or have some questions about it, as well.

While I am not necessarily against the idea of a Sikh box for the FBI to check in the case of a hate attack against a Sikh, I am very skeptical of the FBI being an agency capable of working in the best interests of our community. To put it directly, I don’t trust them. And I’m not sure there is any reason for our community at large to trust them. Isn’t trust a prerequisite to inviting someone with a whole lot of power and resources into your homes, your schools, your houses of worship?

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Jakara Movement starts Sikhiya: Graduate Application Service

j__1_.jpegCo-blogged by Sanehwal and Mewa Singh

In an easily missed bit of North American Sikh intellectual bloodsport, IJ Singhand a graduate of UC Berkeleydebated ideals about graduate education, the panth, and the academy. It is worth reading through for their different orientations towards the discussion, if at the very least to see how two people with very different positions in life (gender, education, class, age) interpretthe issues at stake.

In IJs article, he mentioned the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program, an American government program that funds graduate research. I had to Wikipedia it. At the time I was an undergraduate interested in applying to PhD programs in the social sciences, and despite the wealth of resources at my university, I ended up scouring the internet for advice on how to successfully apply to doctoral programs that routinely get upwards of 400 applications for 5 or 6 seats. The National Science Foundations graduate research fellowship was part of the deluge of items to tackle: letters of recommendation, emails to potential advisors, picking programs, and the dreaded statement of purpose. To make matters worse, my primary advisor was on leave, and unlike many of my peers, I had few friends or places to turn where I felt comfortable getting honest and expert advice on how to craft applications that best demonstrated my accomplishments and abilities.

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From Stockton to Oak Creek and back to Stockton – Sept 22, 2012

printingpress.jpegThe history of the Sikhs in the United States is known well in specific circles. Bhagat Singh Thinds famous failed case for legal recognition by the US Supreme Court, iconic images of Stockton Gurdwara, traces of the Punjabi-Mexican experience, memories of the Ghadari Babas are generally remembered in this context. However, this is merely the tip of the iceberg.

A fascinating tale that is rarely discussed is that of Pahkar Singh. In our new post 9/11 fad to ad nauseam repeat that we are a peaceful religion, we tend to dismiss those heroic Sikhs that also faced racial discrimination in their own way. In the case of Pahkar Singh, the young Punjabi Sikh farmer living in the Imperial Valley (East of San Diego) in 1925. After being robbed of his crops and cheated by whites that took advantages of the racist laws in the land, Pahkar Singh picked up his gun and gandasa and killed two of them. He only stopped from killing a third, when the mans 8 month pregnant wife, literally stood in the face of the barrel to protect her husband. At that point, Pahkar Singh turned himself in. At his defense, along with other Punjabi farmers, many even white small farmers came to sympathize with Pahkar Singh. He spent 15 years in San Quentin before he was released. It is these lesser known instances of the Sikh-American experience that I find so much more interesting.

In this vein, a number of Sikh organizations led by Stockton Gurdwara and the Sikh Information Centre have come together to host a series of events in celebration of the Sikh-American Centennial. Beginning on SEPTEMBER 22, , there are a series of events to commemorate, remember, and reflect on the Sikh-American focus. YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS IT! With the recent events at Oak Creek Gurdwara, this may be a more prescient time than ever.

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What Next? Re-thinking Sikh Identity After the Wisconsin Tragedy

Guest blogged by Parvinder Mehta

Sikh_Child.jpgAmidst the barrage and frenzy of shock and surprise and the discussions about why the Sikh community has been targeted and victimized through history, I wonder how Sikh parents have tried to make sense of the massacre of six Sikhs and the suicide of the gunman who came with his hateful agenda to the Gurdwara in Wisconsin earlier this month. How can one human kill another human being on purpose? I am always haunted by this question. As a parent, I shudder at the thought of violence creeping up in our lives. It is tough explaining to your children why some people commit heinous crimes against innocent people and why some people do not like Sikhs or may have never known about Sikhs. Or explaining why a Michigan Gurdwara was vandalized last year and how ignorance can be a dangerous premise.

I knew I must tackle the endless questions that they would ask about why someone committed this heinous act. I knew I must not use any rhetoric of hate or fear when talking to my children, the same way as my parents had taught me. Terms like prejudice, bias, racism, and ignorance are part of my childrens vocabulary much sooner than I had hoped. As a teacher and a parent, as a proud and practicing Sikh, I have always shared the anecdotes from Sikh history with my children where courage, not fear, is the driving lesson. The crucial question that we, as Sikh American parents, are faced is how we reassure our children that such hate-driven incidents will never recur. What can we do as Sikh parents to promise our children a hate-free environment so they can assert their Sikh identities without fear?

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How Sikhs Can Help Change Law in California

This election year is a reminder that Sikh Americans need to participate moreactivelyin civic and political life. In order for the government and the media to pay attention to issues affecting our community, we need to have a seat at the table where decisions are being made and ensure that our voice is included in any policy changes.

The following are two ways that individuals can take action to change law that would impact the lives of Sikh Americans in California. These actions are for individuals living in California, but similar actions can and will take place in other states at various times. California is the 8th largest economy in the world, so if these changes become law – then these actions are even more meaningful for the Sikh community. It will go down in history that Sikh Americans helped create change for not just our own community but other marginalized communities too.

The following two bills have already successfully passed through both the California Assembly and Senate. Much of the hard work has been accomplished thanks to advocates within the Sikh community, sangat members across the state and Sikh organizations such as The Sikh Coalition. The final step in this process is for Governor Brown to sign these bills into law. You can help by taking one small step for each bill – by simply contacting the Governor’s office. While Governor Brown has until September 30th to sign these bills into law, he can decide on the bills any day. We encourage you to take action today! Please leave a comment in the section below letting us know if you have taken action.

206039_10151002440702003_1197484710_n.jpgAB1964 – Workplace Religious Freedom Act: SIGN THE PETITION

If this bill moves forward and becomes law, it will sharply reduce job discrimination against Sikhs and other religious minorities and guarantee equal employment opportunity to all workers in California.

 

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SB1540 – Revised Curriculum Framework: History-Social Science:SIGN THE PETITION

This bill would authorize the State Board of Education to complete the revision process of the History-Social Science Framework for California schools. When completed, this framework will ensure that California students learn about Sikhism and Sikh contributions, thereby increasing appreciation for diversity and reducing ignorance of the sort that leads to bullying and bias.

 


Sikh Women’s Love Anthology: Submission Call

We believe at the heart of each Sikh American woman, there are multiple love stories thatinhabit the mind, body, and soul.

sikh_women_love.jpeg

Artist: Rupy Cheema Tut

This one is for you dear Kaurs!

The first ever Sikh Women’s Love Anthology is being created and your voices are needed. This groundbreaking anthology will be a compilation of love stories written by and about Sikh women living in North America and will be publishedin the form of memoirs, creative non-fiction stories, and creative essays.

Sikh women have an incredible history of powerful and inspiring narratives – often heard through our oral tradition. This project is a way of documenting these narratives and providing a space for women in the Sikh community, connecting with one another to dialogue and document the complexities and nuanced experiences of love as we see it. Love can take many forms – “through lovers holding hands, singing a shabad, eating a good meal to nourish ones body, hiking an unknown terrain, traveling a new country, holding a sick child close, fighting for civil and human rights or even embarking on the journey to falling in love with ourselves as women and human beings, spiritual beings” [from guidelines]. Love is at the core of our very existence as Sikhs.

This is a wonderful opportunity to pave the path for Kaur voices that we do not often hear. Sikh women who are dedicated to their families, their faith and their activism and manifest their love in dynamic ways. Yet their stories go unheard.Documenting one’s story provides for self-reflection and is “an act of resistance against social, cultural, media, and political forces that want to define women as less than humane“. This is an important way to chronicle narratives for future generations of Sikh American women and men.

Click below the break for submission details. For further information and full submission guidelines, please email sikh.lovestories[at]gmail.com.

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Bhangra at the US Open?

Just a quick post to lighten your day. According to this new promo, the US Open is using Bhangra to promote the upcoming events.

The video was filmed a few days ago in Central Park by ESPN.

Bhangra was also part of the Olympics closing ceremony in London. It makes you wonder though – how can we get more Punjabi athletes represented in sports? And why the sudden interest in Bhangra… ?


Teaching Children about Sikhs and Sikhism: Taking it a Step Further

Guest blogged by Amardeep Singh

Recently I found myself in the odd position of being, for a brief moment, a sort of spokesperson for the Sikh-American community in the wake of the terrible shootings at a Sikh Gurdwara in Wisconsin.

Page from the book, The Boy with Long Hair

It’s odd for me because I am a pretty secular Sikh, who doesn’t have an especially deep knowledge of Sikh history or theology. After my essay on “Being Sikh in America” appeared in the New York Times, a colleague at the university where I teach later invited me to give a talk on Sikhism for students at the university this fall, but I had to decline — I think others could probably do a better job. I also started saying no to interview requests and reprint requests once I felt that my main point — that we should be clear that we are “united against hate” had left its mark. And that’s just fine: while we are all still processing the horror of what happened in Oak Creek two weeks ago, it has been inspiring to see many positive and constructive voices from the Sikh community appearing in the American media.

The part that remains pressing for me as a parent is the issue I mentioned at the end of the post I wrote two weeks ago — how to talk to my children about either the immediate issue of racial and religious hostility, or even the broader question of how to educate them about Sikhism as a religion.

As I was raised, much of the heavy lifting with regards to religious education was done via Gurdwara Sunday school (in Silver Spring, MD), and various day camps for Sikh children. I don’t recall either of my parents actually sitting me down and saying, “ok, here is the story of Guru Nanak…” or anything along those lines. And as my own son becomes old enough to enroll in Sunday school at our own local Gurdwara, it’s tempting to simply continue that pattern to avoid certain uncomfortable questions (such as: “did that really happen, or is it make-believe?”). What is taught is often heavy on use of Janam Sakhis and a pretty narrow version of the accomplishments and doings of the various Gurus. And memorizing various numbers, names, and prayers: 10 Gurus, 5 Ks, Jap Ji Sahib. (No one succeeded, at that point, in teaching me much actual spoken Punjabi, so the memorization of Jap Ji Sahib was purely by rote — to impress the family back in India, maybe? I had very little idea of the meaning or context of anything I learned at Sunday school until I sought out that knowledge as an adult.)

Why isn’t that approach enough for me as a parent? Two reasons.

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The Sikh Coalition Diversity Video Competition

Sikh Coalition Diversity Video Competition 2012 FlyerThe use of social video sites by our community has seen an upward trend. Of course, many readers of this blog will instantly recognize individuals that have emerged in the last two to three years using YouTube and other social media sites – Mandeep Sethi, Humble the Poet, JusReign, and IISuperwomanII are but a few of the commonly recognized names from North America alone.

As it becomes more accessible, we are also seeing the emergence of more grassroots-level use of social video. This medium has allowed Sikhs, and particularly Sikh youth, to express themselves to an unprecedented audience size, and there are several organizations encouraging Sikhs to make use of this platform. For example, SikhNet has been running their Youth Online Film Festival since 2006, and the Sikh Coalition is also holding their third annual Diversity Video Competition for its third consecutive year.

Recently, Manbeena Kaur,the Sikh Coalition’s Education Director, was good enough to answer some questions about the use of social video for the purposes of Sikh education and awareness.

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Letters Home

Guest blogged by Preeti Kaur

The following is an excerpt from Preeti Kaur’s poem “Letters Home,” in honor of those lost and injured in Oak Creek, WI. Read the full poem here, and sign the petition to push the FBI to track hate crimes against Sikhs.

i travel the 5th udaasi
i see no stranger in this country
when i was born my mother carried me
to richmond hill new york gurdwara to discover the first
letter of my name
as grown woman i perch above
pacific watch from el sobrante, california gurdwara
as fog rolls under golden
gates spine at sunset
i recite rehraas toward an angel island

100 year udaasi and i have traveled the whole country
hyphen is a language i lost

when the door to the Guru arrived
as asteroid from amritsar to stockton
Mian Mir put down the first brick
in the americas too
walt whitman spoke to 10 Nanaks
left his four directioned
pairs of shoes outside stocktons darbar
shoes for us to borrow

in oak creek Bhai Taru Singh Jis scalp
lives again an eternal hair
which grows from 1907 bellingham
tied into the topknot of wisconsin

our kanga combs this hair with media soundbites
hair which absorbs perfume of flags
a mane we sometimes fear to wash

lakhi shah vanjara, mehar karo
give us your brave flame today
make our roof known as only nirbhao nirvair

hot winds blow away
with 5th Nanaks naam we alight
this fire beneath us the first shaheed
a heat which ignites miri piri
for when they come for us
again


Wherefore art thou, Ricky Gill?
(source: Ricky Gill campaign website)

Ricky Gill is the son of Sikh parents and is running to represent California’s 9th Congressional District (photo: Ricky Gill campaign website)

I have written several times in the past about Ranjit “Ricky” Gill, the Republican Party candidate for Congress in California’s 9th Congressional District. Gill is challenging Democratic Party incumbent Jerry McNerney for the seat.

Gill, 25, is the son of Sikh physicians in the Stockton, California area. Much of the donations to his campaign have come from the Sikh community, as well as interests in the healthcare and agricultural industries. The northern California constituency for which Gill is contesting is an area that has a sizable Sikh population and is, in fact, home to the first and oldest Gurdwara in the United States (the Gurdwara is celebrating its 100-year anniversary this year).

There have been a variety of questions about Gill’s candidacy, particularly based on his age and lack of experience, and claims that he is downplaying his party affiliation (indeed, the fact that he is running as a Republican is not immediately transparent on his campaign website).

In April, I wrote about the emerging perception that Ricky Gill was also distancing himself from his Sikh background:

Much like South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley did when she ran for the Governors seat, Gill is reportedly distancing himself from his Sikh heritage in his campaign and emphasizing a Christian background. As Haley endorsed Gill late last year, perhaps it should not be a surprise that he is following her playbook, but it is nonetheless disappointing that a Sikh American is choosing to obscure his own background for the sake of an election.

Shortly afterwards, I contacted Gill’s campaign to offer the opportunity to address this issue. I did not receive a response.

Fast forward to today, Gill’s minimal response to the attack at the Oak Creek, Wisconsin Gurdwara has reinforced the belief that Gill is dissociating himself from his religious background.

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As a community we mourn, but together we will lead

SikhLEAD_w_Subtext_300x79.jpgDuring this past week following the tragic events in Wisconsin, our community has changed substantially. We have grown as a people and identified even more with Sikhi, standing up in a time of crisis, and responding in a positive and effective way, battling apathy with activism and suffering with solidarity.

SALDEFsSikhLEADLeadership Development Program will ensure that our youth remain engaged with the issues that continue to affect our community today and will provide them with the tools they need to enact real change. Although it may be a dark time for many of us, it is now more than ever that we need leaders and young activists leading the struggle against oppression. It is now more than ever that we need the younger generation to step up to the podium and speak out and act against injustice. Its not enough to feel for our Sikh brothers and sisters anymore. The time is now for the youth to rise up and become leaders, especially in the wake of the Wisconsin shooting tragedy.

The Leadership Development Program brings together approximately 15 young Sikh American leaders from across the country to participate in six days of training spread over Columbus Day and Memorial Day weekends. Attendees will participate in a series of workshops aimed to challenge, inspire and support a group of intelligent and motivated Sikh leaders. The purpose of the program is to empower the Sikh American youth to be confident, aware and resourceful individuals, equipped with all the tools they need to fulfill both their personal potential but also that of the Sikh American community. For more details please visit www.sikhlead.org.

Let us take on the Gurus seva together and become the pioneers of our own future, a future that has no place for events such as the Wisconsin shootings. The deadline to apply for the SikhLEAD LDP has been extended until August 19, 2012 at 11:59 EST.


Sikhs vs. Sheiks

Needless to say, it’s been a tough week. I have been grateful for all the thoughtful writing my Sikh brothers and sisters have been putting out through the mainstream and independent media and all the important conversations that have been happening here at TLH and beyond.

That being said, sometimes it’s nice to take a few minutes away from the intense discussion and laugh a little. As Naunihal Singh noted in his recent (fantastic) column in the New Yorker, neither John Stewart nor Steven Colbert have made any mention of Oak Creek at all since the tragedy. Fortunately, there is a new, edgy late night talk show on FX called Totally Biased, hosted by comedian W. Kamau Bell and produced by Chris Rock, that did go there. And in a respectful way. No surprise, given that fellow desi Brooklynite Hari Kondabolu (who has a master’s degree in human rights from the London School of Economics) is a writer for the show. In this clip, Bell exposes the absurdity of some of the discussions in the mass media (and by politicians) about Oak Creek and the Sikh community. Hope you enjoy it. And I look forward to what Totally Biased has in store moving forward. (Also check out this clip from the same show about the NYPD’s stop & frisk policy).

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A Sikhs Response to What Next? After the Oak Creek Gurdwara Massacre

PowerpointThe news is still a shock. The question of why has been one that I have heard most often. Followed by what next?

It is this second question that most interests me, as well.

The responses have been varied.

There are some that have called out that we are all American Sikhs,although most within the community would be a bit confused as most of us use the title Sikh-Americans, while the term American Sikhs is generally used for those sections in our community that often were first introduced to Sikhi by the late Yogi Bhajan.

There are others that are taking on the task to teach others about Sikhi and raise talking points, when speaking to the media either national or even regional. SALDEF and Sikh Coalitionhave been at the forefront and have even produced Sikhi 101-type materialsthat can be used when speaking to non-Sikh audiences. Both should be commended for their work.

Still far more interesting to me and is often the case within The Langar Hall is how Sikhs dialogue with each other. While still important in some ways it seems a bit less significant how Sikhs speak to non-Sikhs, when compared to how we speak to one another. National attention will wane; the media will become bored; yet, we will still be there with one another. Two recent postings one published on this very blog largely speak to this very question.

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Where Do We Go From Here? A Sikh Response to the Oak Creek Gurduara Massacre

Guest blogged by Santbir Singh

candle.jpgWe are not strangers to random acts of violence and discrimination. Although mass shootings have become far too common in America in recent years, rarely have these horrific crimes been targeted at one community. Today, that changed. Our beautiful gifts, our kesh and dastars, have become easy targets for the ignorant and angry. Since 9/11 that discrimination has only increased. However, with the exception of the senseless killing of Balbir Singh Sodhi, these attacks have never been so deadly. Now Sikh Americans are left confused and uncertain of how to respond.

Our first priority must be the survivors and their friends and family. We are a generous community that is admirable in our response to tragedies. Seva is really nothing more than an act of love, a demonstration of recognizing the spark of the divine in others. Just as Guru Nanak sought to serve those in need wherever he traveled, we must reach out to our sisters and brothers in Oak Creek and demonstrate our support for them in every way conceivable. Whether this means monetary assistance, providing people on the ground, or offering support and understanding for the psychological trauma the Sangat of Oak Creek have suffered, a tragedy such as this provides us a unique opportunity to demonstrate our strength as a community.

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Sikh Shooting in Wisconsin | Information and Resources

ap_sihk_temple_shooting_wisconsin_reax_080512_20120805183641_640_480.jpegOver the past 12 hours#templeshootinghas been covering thetwittersphere. It is a reference to the tragedy that occurred early this morning in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, where a gunman entered a Gurdwara during Sunday divan and killed six sangat members, wounding many more. Sikhs around the country reacted almost immediately to this event – posting updates on Facebook and Twitter, speaking to news outlets, filling in gaps of misinfomation, supporting Sikh organizations who have been working diligently with local officials and government agencies and community members who started up a fund for the families of the victims. While this has been an incredibly traumatic experience for the Sikh American community, we are inspired by the actions of the police officer who came to the aid of the sangat members – potentially preventing a larger massacre. We are comforted by the support of our friends and colleagues who have reached out to the Sikh community offering their solidarity.

Here we have started a running list of articles, resources and community gatherings. We hope this will be a way for you to learn about the events and about ways for you to stay engaged.

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