Home » Oak Creek massacre: Bullet hole remains in Sikh temple 10 years after attack – as community tries to ‘build around the wound’ | US News

Oak Creek massacre: Bullet hole remains in Sikh temple 10 years after attack – as community tries to ‘build around the wound’ | US News

by fastnewz

A decade on from a mass taking pictures at a Wisconsin Sikh temple, the son of one of many victims has advised Sky Information that not sufficient is being achieved to maintain the neighborhood protected.

On 5 August 2012, the Sikh neighborhood of Oak Creek got here underneath assault when white supremacist Wade Web page stormed a Gurdwara in Wisconsin and gunned down six worshippers, earlier than taking pictures himself lifeless.

A seventh one who was severely paralysed died from his accidents in 2020.

Among the many victims was the president of the temple, Satwant Singh Kaleka.

Picture:
Satwant Singh Kaleka

The 65-year-old used a butter knife – the one weapon he may discover – to problem Web page.

His actions could have created a distraction which allowed a number of individuals to flee the realm unhurt, nonetheless he sustained gunshot wounds within the course of.

FBI brokers described Mr Kaleka as “a hero” for preventing to the dying whereas defending others.

His son, Pardeep Singh Kaleka, advised Sky Information “we’re persevering with to construct across the wound locally”.

He has develop into a key anti-hate crime activist within the space by his engagement in neighborhood work. He mentioned a very powerful factor to him is that “we hold pushing for a society free from bigotry and hate”.

Pardeep is calling for a ‘society approach’ to cut hate crime Pic: Angela Major
Picture:
Pardeep Singh Kaleka is asking for a ‘society method’ to chop hate crime. Pic: Angela Main

He mentioned: “Not sufficient has been achieved to maintain communities like ours protected”, including: “That is why we proceed to advocate for change”.

“I am attempting to stop the subsequent Wade Web page on the market from hurting any neighborhood.”

He continued: “Justice will solely be served once we construct a society the place hate and violence are much less possible.

“We’ve rebuilt our Gurdwara and can use the sword of compassion to construct a extra simply society.”

A bullet gap stays on a door body on the Sikh temple.

A plaque under it reads “We’re one” – a key Sikh precept.

Sikh hate crime on the rise

The FBI started monitoring anti-Sikh hate crimes and bias incidents after the assault.

The testimony of Harpreet Singh Saini (then 18 years previous), who misplaced his mom at Oak Creek, inspired them to take action, says Sikh Coalition, a Sikh-American advocacy group.

Harpreet Singh Saini, whose mother was killed in the shooting, testified at a hearing on hate crimes in 2012
Picture:
Harpreet Singh Saini testified at a listening to on hate crimes in 2012

Nevertheless, hate crime reporting will not be necessary in the USA, so the out there knowledge “is an undercount of the particular variety of hate crimes”, it mentioned.

Mr Saini, who testified in 2012, has referred to as on Congress this week to “take motion as we speak on three items of laws to counter the form of hate we face”.

The latest FBI knowledge, printed in 2021, exhibits that anti-Sikh hate crimes hit a report excessive of 89 documented incidents in 2020, reflecting an 82% enhance on 2019, regardless of an general lower within the variety of anti-religious hate crimes.

This yr has additionally seen a number of assaults on Sikhs, together with two assaults in New York inside 10 days.

The Oak Creek Massacre killed seven worshippers. Pic: Sikh Coalition
Picture:
The bloodbath noticed seven worshippers killed. Pic: Sikh Coalition

Occasions in place to commemorate 10-year anniversary

The Oak Creek Sikh neighborhood can be internet hosting a collection of occasions to commemorate the anniversary, together with a candlelight vigil and a neighborhood occasion defining the spirit of “chardi kala” – everlasting resilience, optimism and pleasure.

The mayor of Oak Creek, Daniel Bukiewicz, advised Sky Information that officers together with members of the Division of Justice and Homeland Safety will attend.

Mayor Daniel Bukiewicz gets a turban tied at the Chardi Kala community event. Pic: Leslie Flynn
Picture:
Mayor Daniel Bukiewicz will get a turban tied at a neighborhood occasion. Pic: Leslie Flynn

“The incident not solely shook Oak Creek however all of Wisconsin and the Sikh neighborhood all over the world,” he mentioned.

“I’ve skilled that the sentiments and beliefs of the Sikhs are one in every of unity and acceptance.”

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