pawanjit – UNITED SIKHS Blog Recognize The Human Race As One Tue, 28 Nov 2017 14:31:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Statement by the President on the Anniversary of the Birth of Guru Nanak Dev Ji Thu, 10 Nov 2011 15:34:16 +0000 THE WHITE HOUSE

Office of the Press Secretary



November 10, 2011

Statement by the President on the Anniversary of the Birth of Guru Nanak Dev Ji

I send my best wishes to all those observing the anniversary of the birth of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, the first Sikh Guru. On this occasion, we are reminded of the fundamental principles of Sikhism, including the equality of all people, the sanctity of living an honest life, and the importance of service to our neighbors. I’m proud that during my presidency the White House hosted the first celebration of the birth of Guru Nanak, and our country is grateful for the extraordinary contributions that Sikh Americans have made to our nation. As Sikhs across America and around the world celebrate the life of Guru Nanak, all of us can draw inspiration from his message of equality, honesty, and helping those who are in need.

Alabama, Land of the Scared Thu, 06 Oct 2011 21:22:57 +0000 This week Alabama passed immigration legislation that turns the police force, whose primary duty is to protect, into immigration officials with the power to question anyone, where there is “reasonable suspicion”, about their immigration status. Moreover, schools which are supposed to provide a nurturing and safe environment are now responsible for recording the undocumented status of their students. In case there was any doubt about the devastating implications of this law for the Hispanic community in Alabama, one only had to read this week’s headlines: “After Ruling, Hispanics Flee…” (New York Times), “Hispanic Students Vanish from Alabama Schools…” (Associated Press). The State of Alabama has confirmed that over 2,000 Hispanic children never showed up for school on Monday.

Perhaps the most horrifying aspect of both the adoption and subsequent upholding of this legislation is that Alabama has sanctioned the ethnic cleansing of the Hispanic community. Would you stay in a place where you felt constantly “suspect” based on your appearance, where a minor traffic violation could result in deportation, and where every contract you’ve signed could become null and void? When legislation is aimed at demonizing specific communities and ultimately gains judicial sanction, these targeted communities are then relegated to second class status.

It is important to note that this law has implications for all people of color in Alabama, not just Hispanics. Suddenly, communities that have lived under a “specter of suspicion” since 9/11 may also be asked for their papers. Ultimately, there is nothing to stop officials from targeting those they deem to be “foreign” (i.e. South Asians, Sikhs, Muslims, and Arabs) because of their skin color, language, or religious/ cultural dress. In the last decade, we as a country have unconscionably moved to treating an entire segment of our population, specifically those with brown skin, as “suspect”. Thus, these laws mete out collective punishment on a large segment of the U.S. population irrespective of whether they are here lawfully or unlawfully.

Foster Maer, Senior Council at LatinoJustice PRLDEF explains, “The venomous legislative and political attacks on undocumented immigrants that we see these days signals to the public that it is okay to demonize, and thus to hate, immigrants, which inevitably leads to violence against immigrants. The events in Patchogue and in Farmingville, New York, in Allentown, PA, and elsewhere have demonstrated this to be true.”

The disproportionate response to addressing a complex and multi-layered issue such as immigration is disgraceful because it forces families to uproot their lives and flee their homes, schools, and communities. Every single Alabaman, regardless of racial, ethnic, or religious affiliation, will be impacted by the creation of a defacto police state. All that is left to say is . . . welcome to the land of the scared.

By: Nomi Teutsch, UNITED SIKHS/ TBFF Faith Fellow TBFF and Hansdeep Singh, UNITED SIKHS Senior Staff Attorney

UNITED SIKHS Participating in International Law Conference Thu, 21 Oct 2010 20:38:02 +0000 Hansdeep Singh, Staff Attorney and Ilana Ofgang, Legal Fellow will be attending the American Branch of International Law Association (ABILA) Conference that is being  held at Fordham University School of Law and at the American Bar Association (ABA) from Oct. 21-23.

This is a yearly conference where issues of both public and private international law are covered.  Eminent speakers from all over the world come to participate at this event.

Additionally, Hansdeep Singh has been invited to speak on a panel discussing “Pathways to Employment in International Law”.  On the panel is also a preeminent international law scholar, Professor Michael P. Scharf who is a scholar on international criminal law covering: war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide.

Please come and join us if you are passionate about international law:

Location: Fordham University School of Law, McNally Amphitheatre

Time: 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm; Saturday 23, 2010

Topic: A unique forum that brings law students and new lawyers together with experienced practitioners to explore opportunities for employment in international law. Learn about international internship opportunities, how to network with legal experts from around the world, practice in other legal systems and cultures, become active in international organizations and societies, and how to develop legal and interpersonal skills. Sponsored by the ABA Section of International Law and ILSA.

Moderator: William Patterson, Executive Director, International Law Students Association


Michael P. Scharf, John Deaver Drinko – Baker & Hostetler Professor of Law and Director of the Frederick K. Cox International Law Center at Case Western Reserve University School of Law; Chairman of the Board of the International Law Students Association; Member of the Executive Committee of the ABILA;

Beth S. Lyons, Defence Counsel at International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)

Hansdeep Singh, Senior Staff Attorney, International Civil and Human Rights Advocate