Wahe Guru Ji Ka Khalsa, Wahe Guru Ji Ki Fateh.
Yesterday, June 16, a lone gunman opened fire at a U.S. Marine recruitment center, killing four U.S. Marines, and injuring others. The U.S. Marines are a loyal, fierce force, made up of brave soldiers dedicating their lives to protect democracy and freedom. It is a tragedy beyond words that our military warriors were gunned down, not on a field of battle – but through a cowardly “drive by” that involved innocent lives.
As Sikhs, we have a long, time-honored tradition of fighting for freedom, as well. We salute these fallen Marines and offer our prayers and deepest condolences to their friends and family members.
Unfortunately, the perpetrator of this crime had an unshorn beard. Though he was killed during a shootout with police, we know, from experience, that sometimes very disturbed individuals will commit backlash or hate crimes in the aftermath of such an event.
So, please exercise caution in the days ahead. Be aware and vigilant. Don’t go out alone especially in unfamiliar environments.
If you experience any threats or violence, please notify your local law enforcement immediately. We also encourage you to reach out to the Sikh Coalition if something should happen. Their number is 212-655-3095 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance. The Sikh Coalition proactively works with federal authorities to bring attention to any issues that arise.
May the Guru give solace to the grieving, and may we find the inner strength to create a world of peace.