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USA More than half of Sikh kids bullied in school, Turbaned Sikhs suffer most

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by aristotle, Mar 19, 2014.

  1. aristotle

    aristotle
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    Over half of Sikh students experience widespread bullying in U.S. schools which is more than double the national rate, according to a new report. The report ‘Go Home Terrorist: A Report on Bullying Against Sikh American School Children’ is based on survey of over 500 Sikh students, and interviewed 50 Sikh students in four states: Massachusetts, Indiana, Washington, and California.

    “We found that the majority of Sikh children, just over 50 per cent, endure school bullying. And the numbers are worse for turbaned Sikh children,” said the report of the Sikh Coalition, which was released at the Capitol Hill last week.

    “Over two-thirds, or 67 per cent, reported that they are bullied in school. The word ‘widespread’, particularly as it applies to turbaned Sikh youth, is not an exaggeration,” it said.

    According to the National Center for Education Statistics, 32 per cent of all students ages 12 to 18 report that they are bullied in school.

    According to the report, Sikh children shared how they are called ‘bin Laden’ or ‘terrorist’ or told to ‘Go back to their country’. Classmates make fun of their turbans and even try to forcibly remove them, it said.

    Clearly, the extraordinary rates of bullying Sikh American school children endure is not happening in a vacuum. The period since 9/11 has been particularly difficult for Sikh Americans and their children, the report said.

    Noting that the government, teachers, and school administrators are not powerless to stop Sikh children from being bullied, the Sikh Coalition urged the U.S. Congress to prioritise passage of the Safe Schools Improvement Act.

    Though are mostly American citizens whose families often hail from India, Sikhs are are called "Osama" or "terrorist." They have their hair, which their religion bars men from cutting, pulled and traditional head coverings mocked.

    "They would grab my turban and not let go even though I requested them to stop," said Pawan Singh, 16, a junior at DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx. Like many youths, Singh said the bullying was worst in middle school. He went to Jonas Bronck Academy, a predominantly Hispanic middle school in the Bronx. Singh pretended it wasn’t a big deal. But in reality "it felt demeaning," he said. "I felt kind of like a second class citizen. I wasn't feeling like a human."

    The findings in the study matched the numbers from an earlier survey in New York City, which has a large Sikh community concentrated around Richmond Hill, Queens.

    (Sources: http://www.thehindu.com/news/intern...-experience-bullying-in-us/article5801342.ece,http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/education/sikh-kids-bullied-school-report-article-1.1721676)
    (Image Source: http://www.saldef.org/events/saldef...americans-to-vote/attachment/kidbeingbullied/)
     

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  3. aristotle

    aristotle
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    Well, for once I mean to differ. Holding the 'West' culprit for Racism may not be a wise thing to do.

    Blacks were racially segregated for long in the US, but ultimately, weren't they given equal rights on paper and practice? Also, 'White' tourists are regularly molested when they visit India, Black students in Indian Universities are meted out the same treatment as the Sikh students in the US schools are....aren't they equal examples of Racism?

    Probably we tend to subconsciously demonify the 'West' for Racism. What I think we should do is push for equal rights, not complicate things by pointing fingers.

    I know how it feels to be segregated, to be the only turbaned and bearded guy in the class, and the toll bullying can take on one's self confidence. These kids really need to be helped ASAP.
     
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  4. AngloSikhPeace

    AngloSikhPeace United Kingdom
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    Umm...


    I am white. I am not racist. Vast majority of white people I know hate racists. A small number of extremists/morons ruin things for the rest, just like in other parts of the world.
    And there's plenty of racism amongst Asian people too. People say horrible things against black people in private amongst themselves, and the Jews get a lot of abuse as well.
     
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  5. Sherdil

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    I grew up in the US. I didn't have kes when I was growing up, but my friends that did only experienced bullying up until middle-school. Nothing too severe. In high school, it was hardly ever seen since they have more maturity.

    I grew my hair after 9/11 and it was somewhat difficult. A lot of dirty looks and some comments. I know people who had it worse. Since the shooting in the Wisconsin Gurdwara, people have seen the light. They approach you and make small talk. They go out of their way to be kind to you. It's as if they feel guilty for putting you through the hate this past decade.

    Things are getting better.
     
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  6. Abneet

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    I can back up gyani ji's point on how white race especially in America tend To be unfriendly towards foreigners. Whites in America have a huge problem in educating themselves about other cultures or religions. Most of them feel superior to other races. Sikh children need to help educate those around them. Teenagers now a days bully Sikh kids almost on a daily basis and the sad part is the parents don't see it in the view of their child. From my experience of bullying I got bullied by 20yr olds when I was 13 at a public place. After that experience I realized that the world isn't so nice but I had a strong faith in Sikhi so non of the talking did any affect to me. Also another sad part is people are afraid of hanging out with Sikhs who wear turbans around public. It's sad but true. As a sikh parent I would make sure they feel confident and safe and proud to stand out and face the dangers. Keeping Sikhi intact in America is a struggle and gurdwaras have done poorly reaching out to the youth in terms of educating about faith and history but also about western culture. Change will come though. Also Harry ji you are right that western culture is spreading to India and causing havoc there for Sikh youth. If you look at majority Muslim countries have done good job from saying away from the whole western culture style in terms of bad music and fashion trends but they have a lot of other problems including freedom rights.
     
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  7. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    well for an all inclusive religion that is supposed to be light years ahead of all the others, for a religion that is supposed to see all life as one, that sees god in everything, we sure are excelling ourselves today

    I did not say that, I said it was being emulated, copied, you make western culture sound like a disease, what is western culture? I will tell you , it is free will, the freedom to make your own choices about what you wear, say, act, think,

    .

    they probably have that problem due to the lack of freedom....
     
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  8. Abneet

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    I agree western culture is free will but when more than the majority start trends including lastest fashion or vulgar music it affects ones religious faith but many fall into the pit of maya over here not like it's good any other part of the world but gurdwaras should atleast have some youth discussions on this topic. Western culture is a disease an it affected many Singhs I have known that were moral people and came to America and flipped around. Surely it affects people like a disease.
     
  9. Harry Haller

    Harry Haller United Kingdom
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    This is a brilliant thread! I love this thread! since when did the majority follow the latest fashion or vulgar music? Does Punjab not produce enough vulgar music of its own? and to be honest what does vulgar music have to do with anything anyway? if you dont like it switch it off!

    I see, so we see god in all humanity apart from the west, where the culture there is a disease, so its impossible that these Singhs that you knew to be moral were never moral to begin with, all that happened was that in the west they were free to be as they truly are, so I guess yes, free will does affect people like a disease, it exposes them
     
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  10. Abneet

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    I'd say that as a Sikh community when these Punjabi singers start promoting caste alcohol or something else and do religious songs out of no where it shouldn't be accepted because we know it's just a stunt to get more popular. Most teenagers follow a musician as a idol and it's a big problem. Also it's not just about what western culture has but the free will of the person to adapt that life like you said. If Sikhs are going to gurdwaras and just sit there with no clue what's being said or take no change than you get to see a downfall. That's most of them these days especially youth.
     
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  11. Harry Haller

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    Is it possible for a moment you can not just state rhetoric and actually address my point?
     
  12. Abneet

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    Explaining it in words is too complicated. If you experienced my life in my shoes I'm surely you would understand.
     
  13. Sherdil

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    This reminds me of the debate surrounding rap music. Parents were concerned that the genre promoted drugs and violence. Rap artists replied that it was the parents' duty to raise their children correctly.

    I think you have a point. I feel like the youth in India like to be seen as "modern". Their idea of modern is what they see on MTV, or in movies. Consequently, their impression of the West is sex, drugs and rock'n roll. This appeals to them for obvious reasons.

    We don't let children watch adult movies, or drink alcohol because their minds are young and impressionable. I'm not sure if that filter exists in India. Parents do not raise their children to avoid such things, because it is not inherent to their culture. How many of us desis, who grew up in the West, had the talk about "birds and the bees" with our parents? Such things don't exist in our culture.

    What we are seeing is a naturally conservative society trying to emulate Western culture. They often get carried away.

    Case in point: Yo Yo Honey Singh
     
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  14. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    ON second thought my comments may have come across as very harsh on "whites". Of course i know there are racists everywhere..but what i was relating is my personal experiences of Sikhs in the ASIAN regions that have settled here for past 150 years or so..have never faced PUBLIC Insults while walking to the supermarket, or walking their dogs..or in school etc....form what i hear such incidents are very very common in the West...not a single Sikh has ever been shot dead in a racist attack in the region i am familiar with even though we are a tiny minority. Of recently has there arisen a lunatic fringe in the majority community in Malaysia/Indonesia which abhor any contact with non-muslims..but still they just tend to IGNORE rather than ATTACK and be violent to loner sikhs etc. Unprovoked senseless racist attacks have never happened in Malaysia. Thats my point.
    SIKHS vis a vis India Pre 1984 and Post 1984 is a POLITICAL Problem CREATED and sustained by the GOVT and the Agencies in Authority in New Delhi. The same goes for Muslims and Christians. Its RELIGION being Misused by the POWER HUNGRY politicians..not the ordinary Man in the street - as is in the WEST..where the GOVTS are PRO minority.. who pass laws of migration, foreign worker assistance, etc etc to help the Foreigners....but lunatics who attack and bully being INDIVIDUALS.
    IN Malaysia India its the direct Opposite..the GOVTS pursue racist discriminatory policies as amatter of course and power games..BUT Individuals are tolerant and peaceful...

    My deepest apologies to any readers and posters who are appalled or hurt by my comments. None was intended. I always speak my mind.

    Jarnail Singh
     
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