The tragic killing of Imam Akonjee and Thara Uddin has deeply saddened the Sikh community. Their murder reminds us that the current political and social climate has a direct and detrimental impact on Muslims and other minority communities.
We recognize that violence like this is connected to other structural violence in our society. We also recognize that the rise in hate crimes we have experienced the past several months is tied connected to the divisive rhetoric emerging from our political discourse.
Now, more than ever, it is apparent that we must hold our politicians accountable for hateful rhetoric. We must respond to such tragedies by reaffirming our values and principles. We must stand strong together, united and in solidarity. We must remain vigilant but not be fearful. And most of all, we must respond to such acts of hate with unwavering love.
We are all here, standing with you – as allies, as support systems, as fellow human beings. As Sikhs, we affirm that we are all in this together and that we will stand up for your right to practice religion freely in this country.