Some quick thoughts
A quick response to some of the themes which dominated social media conversations on the Wisconsin Sikh massacre perpetuated by a white supremacist,
On clueless Americans: Clearly the average American should know everything about a small community of 500,000 in a diverse nation of nearly 350 million. Just like the average Indian knows all about the tribal composition of Ghana and can spot Hutus and Tutsis from a mile away. Yes, the same people who can’t often distinguish between Manipuris and the Chinese.
On the Sikh community: How does it matter if Gurdwaras are wonderful places? (Not that they are not—especially compared to the cesspool Hindu temples often are.) But how is that relevant? If Gurdwaras were not such awesome places, the crime would still have remained as despicable as ever. Indeed, it would be as relevant as pointing out that often the very same Gurdwaras were in the forefront of fomenting terrorism in India in the 1980s and early 1990s.
On similar lines are the comments about Sikhs being ‘very peaceful’ people and such like. Leaving aside the fact that it is usually individuals who are violent or otherwise—-though they may be motivated by virulent ideologies as it happened in this particular instance—how is all that relevant to the current situation? At the very least, they are terribly patronizing comments reducing a diverse community to a few well worn cliches. Much like President Obama’s condescending nonsense when he declared women as smarter than men.
On Pakistan: Is there no tragedy to which some Pakistanis will not hitch their victimhood vehicle? Have you no sense of decency, sir? It took the FBI 2 hours—yes 2 hours—to declare it a case of domestic terrorism and hate crime. And where is Hafiz Syed again? But for some Pakistanis, as soon as it is clear that this may be one of the rare cases when a Pakistani national or the state is not involved in an act of terror, it is time again for the old schtick.
Indeed, long before Agha Waqar Khan and his so-called water kit, Pakistan had already invented the perpetual motion machine. It’s just called victimhood.