Though the facts remain fluid this early in the investigation, all indications are that this was a targeted attack fueled by racism and hate: The suspect traveled from roughly 200 miles away to scout the location the day before, etched a racial slur into his rifle, allegedly posted a racist and anti-Semitic manifesto online, and clearly articulated his motives to the officers who arrested him.
The Sikh Coalition denounces this terrible act of violence, and we refuse to accept white supremacy’s continued targeting and terrorizing of communities of color.
We recognize that these kinds of hate crimes and systemic anti-Black racism both remain urgent issues in our society. And we continue to believe that the Sikh community must stand in unequivocal solidarity with Black Americans in our shared struggle to combat bigotry, racism, and hate. This attack is another reminder that violent hate presents a vicious and complex crisis for so many communities; as we remember Oak Creek, WI; Charleston, SC; Pittsburgh, PA; Poway, CA; El Paso, TX; and too many other tragedies, it is clear that the threat of white nationalist violence is real, and that we cannot afford inaction.
The Sikh Coalition supports the Department of Justice’s ongoing investigation into this act of hate. Moving forward, we remain absolutely committed to working with allied organizations as well as government agencies at the local, state and federal levels in our shared efforts to combat and prevent hate violence. We also urge all elected officials, regardless of party, to denounce this act of terror and condemn those who continue to use
racist or nationalist rhetoric for their own political benefit. And finally, our hearts go out to the families of those who have been injured in other mass casualty events this weekend, from Houston, TX, to Laguna Hills, CA; there have been 198 such shootings
across the country this year.
As always, the Sikh Coalition urges you to practice your faith fearlessly.