Georgia, USA: Incident reported for this past Sunday, around 12:30 pm at another Gurdwara. A white male likely between the age of 17-22, entered the parking lot of the Norcross, GA Gurdwara situated at 1158 Rockbridge Road, and started scratching the parked cars with a very sharp object. When some kids and youth playing in the parking lot raised an alarm and tried to stop him, he started throwing rocks at them, injuring one in the process. The alleged was able to escape the scene. Surprisingly, all expensive cars in the lot were targeted. A complaint was filed in this regard with the Gwinnett county police. Officer CM Hall attended to the case and the case no. is 1473.
The estimated damage to the cars is around $10,000. This is what community leader Mr. Surinder Singh had to say “A white male entered our property and damaged a lot of cars during our prayer time. He has malafide intentions and we need to know whether this was done out of hate. I have a strong suspicion that hate, especially because of our distinct identity, was the reason behind this.”
This incident comes shortly after the massacre in Wisconsin and should not be taken lightly. The Sikh community demands justice be met and that law enforcement acknowledge these acts as hate crimes against Sikhs possibly due to their distinct identity.
How Can You Help ?
- Stay Vigilant. It has been evident for a while now that these incidents are happening in public, surprisingly during rush hours. 2 Sikh men were shot during a afternoon walk, a Sikh priest was stabbed at the airport and the Wisconsin massacre, all happened during day time.
- Gurdwara management is encouraged to ensure that functional security cameras are installed on their premises.
- Create Sikh Awareness- Please continue all efforts to provide Sikh awareness training in schools, at work places and to law enforcement agencies, TSA etc. It is of utmost importance that without having to change our image, we are able to change our image in society.
- California has declared November 2012 as Sikh Awareness and Appreciation Month. UNITED SIKHS has launched, “Your 3 minutes to Fame Contest”. We urge all California Sikh Youth from Grade 5-12 to submit a 5-8 minute Diversity Video about:
- Who Sikhs Are
- Your Experiences of Bullying
- How You Stood Up to It/ Solutions
UNITED SIKHS can help you by providing all resources you would need to conduct Sikh Awareness trainings and prepare you for them. If you would like a UNITED SIKHS representative to take lead, please let us know of that too. You can reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.