Palestine/Israel 101
185 Palestinians have been killed, thousands injured, and nearly 1,000 homes destroyed in the last week in Gaza by Israeli airstrikes (underwritten by American tax dollars). My last post about the dangers of Sikh alliances with pro-Israel groups has sparked some important and much needed discussion and...
Solidarity with Oppression? The Danger of a Sikh-Israel Alliance
A rally in Brooklyn, NY in support of the BDS movement on Monday. Monday evening in Brooklyn, about 50 people gathered to protest Israeli apartheid and encourage the boycott of Israeli goods, a part of the growing boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement. Inspired by the effective use of boycott...
Sikhs fight for rights in the largest democracy in the world
Guest blogged by Kirpa Kaur A few weeks ago, India joined the world in mourning the loss of Nelson Mandela, the former South African president and anti-apartheid revolutionary whose armed resistance and leadership rendered him a “terrorist” and imprisoned for 27 years. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh...
Making money not love
Guest blogged by Jaspreet Kaur There has recently been a lot of stir in the Sikh community about the GAP’s new “Make Love” holiday campaign. The Gap used Waris Ahluwalia, a Sikh actor and designer, as a model for one of their promotional pictures. The response from the Sikh and non Sikh community...
A Critical Analysis of Post 9/11 Sikh American Activism: Addressing White and Christian Supremacy
Guest Blogged by Jaideep Singh As the Sikh American community embarks yet another mobilization against hate attacks— since this latest episode of violence has really hit home with many Sikhs in a way rarely seen since Balbir Singh Sodhi— we would do well to first answer the difficult, necessarily...
10 Years
This March marked ten years since the United States invaded Iraq in the name of Iraqi freedom. Ten years later, potentially over one million Iraqi civilian deaths later, where are we now? What are the people of Iraq left with? Aside from extreme instability and near genocide, Iraqis are now dealing with...
The Face of Human Rights in India
Communities on the periphery of the Indian State, be they Sikhs, Kashmiris, Christians in Nagaland, or even Bengalis and Bangladeshis have long seen the brutality of the “world’s largest hypocrisy.” Despite claims of democracy, progress, and growth, the facade is held together by a...
Happy Birthday Malcolm
Today marks the 86th birthday of the late African American activist Malcolm X. We’ve been hearing a lot about Malcolm X lately since the recent release of a new biography about him written by the great scholar Manning Marable, who just passed away a few weeks ago. A controversial and often misunderstood...
Letter from Kashmir
Guest Blogged by Amritpan Earlier this week I received an email letter from Kashmir. This was not the first such letter from Kashmir, nor I fear, will it be the last. Ive read this letter once, twice, again and again and still cannot begin to explain the helplessness, anger, and despair that I feel...
Amnesty International Concerned for Condemned Sikhs in Dubai
Last month 17 Indian nationals were sentenced to die for killing a Pakistani man. 16 of the 17 men come from a Sikh background. The case has attracted some attention in the Indian press, but has now found place on the BBC and other sources due to Amnesty International, a premier human rights group,...
Ambivalent About Amnesty
Blogged by: Amol Singh In events and programs highlighted at remembering 25 years since 1984, the most vocal criticisms of these remembrances revolve around a desire to forgive or forget. For many it seems regressive and contradictory to highlight these tragedies while India hoists its Sikh Prime Minister...
A new kind of Joan of Arc/(Punjab?)
Blogged by: Amritpan For many years UNICEF India has attempted to survey and document the declining sex ratio and female feticide in India. And for many years the government of India has maintained that Punjab (and thus Sikhs) consistently registered the highest number of kuri maar cases, as compared...
Lahir 2009: The Movement Has Only Begun
This past Saturday night, twenty artists from all over the country took to the mic in front of a packed and energetic crowd at the University of Maryland for Lahir 2009. It was a powerful evening of remembrance and reflection to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the 1984 Sikh Holocaust, organized...
Moving The Movement…Lahir 2009
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” (Margaret Mead) Last Summer, a small group of thoughtful, committedSikh youth from the DC Metropolitan area came together to form “Lahir” (movement)...
My Gurdwara’s Human Rights Committee?
Play along with me here…imagine this Sunday you walk in to your local Gurdwara – remove your shoes, wash your hands, and as you make your way to the main darbar hall, you read the notices on the wall – “Education Committee holding Kirtan Classes Wednesday Night @ 6pm.”...
This Is Who We Are
In remembrance of the 25th anniversary of the Darbar Sahib attack, I’m re-posting a piece I had written for sikhchic.com‘s “1984 & I” series: This Is Who We Are Years ago, I was giving a local church group a tour of our Gurdwara.While I was showing them around the langar...
Sukhdeep Kaur Receives Zeff Fellowship
Rice University senior, Sukhdeep Kaur, has received the Roy and Hazel Zeff Memorial Fellowship – a $25,000 grant, which will allow her to study issues of human rights and access to justice in areas around the world. The news release states: A political science and policy studies major with a focus...
Building Human Rights Culture
Breakthrough is an innovative, international human rights organization using the power of popular culture, media, leadership development and community education to transform public attitudes and advance equality, justice, and dignity. Through initiatives in India and the United States, Breakthrough addresses...
Enjoy The Show But Leave Your Kirpan At Home
Vaisakhi in the diaspora usually brings two things to those living in cities with large Sikh communities: Nagar Kirtans and Vaisakhi concerts. Unfortunately, if you were an Amritdhari Sikh in London this year and you wanted to partake in both, you would have been out of luck. Tickets for the recent...
Let The Truth Be Heard
Earlier this month, worldwide Human Rights organization Amnesty International released a news article on the plight of Sikh Massacre victims of 1984, still awaiting justice after 25 years. This came shortly after the Delhi Court delayed ruling on Jagdish Tytler, due to the CBI’s inability to produce...
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