MADISON HEIGHTS, Mich. (WXYZ) - The local Sikh community in Madison Heights prays for the members out in Wisconsin and is concerned because until they hear otherwise, they can only suspect the shooting to be a hate crime.
Their long beards and turbans sometimes get them mistaken for Muslims by bigots ignorant of the Sikh religion said Jasvir Singh.
“99 percent of the people in the U.S. wearing turbans are not associated with Al Qaeda or Taliban or any terrorist group,” said Singh.
Singh is a member of the Sikh Society of Michigan in Madison Heights. They have been praying for the victims of the shooting. They themselves were victims of a hate crime back in February when someone spray painted a new temple they had been building in Sterling Heights.
“Our religion is based on equality and justice for all. We believe in standing up and fighting and protecting the weak,” said Singh.
Some of their congregation knows people at the temple in Wisconsin and they are asking everyone to stand with them and condemn the mass shooting.
“Such acts of terrorism should be condemned by all communities and all religious groups. We call upon everyone to show their support for the victims and the Sikh community of Milwaukee,” stated Singh.
Singh said that people in the congregation have not yet been in contact with members who attend the temple where the shooting happened but they continue to pray for them.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), based out of Washington D.C., has already issued a statement to show support for the Sikh community and released the following:
"While details of the attack and the motivation of the attacker are still emerging, American Muslims stand with their Sikh brothers and sisters in this time of crisis and loss. We condemn this senseless act of violence, pray for those who were killed or injured and offer sincere condolences to their loved ones.”
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