Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
jayd

Sikh Wants Apology From Bar Owner

Recommended Posts

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/northco...1mi9turban.html

A turban-wearing Rancho Bernardo medical school student claims he was discriminated against when he was turned away from a popular college hangout.

The bar in Orange County has a “no hat” rule.

But Sanjum Paul Singh Samagh, an American-born Sikh, said he tried to explain to the bar owner that his black turban was a centuries-old religious symbol, not a fashion statement.

Samagh, a Stanford University graduate, has now joined forces with a national civil rights organization demanding a public apology and a policy change from the Pierce Street Annex bar in Costa Mesa.

It may be a small thing, just getting into a bar to have a beer with my classmates, but it's the tiny things in life that add up,” Samagh said. “If I don't fight the fight, then what happens the next time?”

His classmates at the University of California Irvine Medical School have declared a boycott against the bar.

Pierce Street Annex officials did not respond to media questions about their policy or the incident.

It began Jan. 25, a Thursday, generally a popular night of cut-rate drinks at the bar. Samagh, 24, said he and about 20 classmates headed to the Annex to celebrate a birthday and the end of exams for the first-year medical students.

Samagh said he reacted with shock when the bar owner barred his entry, telling him that headgear was headgear, religious or not.

“He kept saying he was a lawyer and he knew his rights, and I tried to talk to him, one professional to another, but he was adamant,” Samagh said.

He and his parents, Pam and Paul Samagh of Rancho Bernardo, said they have joined forces with the Washington, D.C.-based Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund, formally requesting an apology.

They are pursuing the action, they say, to raise awareness of acts of discrimination against Sikhs. California is home to one of the largest Sikh populations in the United States, numbering more than 150,000 people, according to the Sikh organization.

The Samagh family has been active in Poway's Sikh temple, where an official there said that blatant acts of discrimination against local Sikhs have been rare.

Paul Samagh said the biggest problem he experienced living in San Diego County was people mistaking him for a Muslim, because of the turban and beard that he and most Sikhs wear. It became dangerous for Sikhs for a brief period after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorism attacks, he said.

“People . . . threatened to kill me more than once,” said Paul Samagh, who owns gas stations now but ran a gourmet food store in Poway at the time. “I just stopped going to work after 9/11.”

The Samagh family said they never experienced outright discrimination while they raised their children in San Diego's North County. Their son was class president, played basketball and was on Rancho Bernardo High School's varsity tennis team – always wearing the turban. He also was senior class valedictorian.

Nationally, the Sikh American Defense group said they encounter anti-Sikh bias incidents at least a few times a month, although generally the problems can be resolved quickly. Recently, a Sikh youth was turned down as a volunteer for a local police department in Northern California because of a no-beard policy, said Rajbir Singh Datta of the Sikh American Defense group, who successfully fought the rule.

“You have to pursue every single one of these cases,” Datta said. “What we want to do is have a society where Sikhs are not looked upon as foreigners. They are part of the fabric of the diversity of the United States.”

I would hate to leave a brother hanging, but common on. I would be offended to if I was in his shoes....But something about this bothers me.

Its not like he was being barred from a library, a community hall, or a social gathering. The guy was being barred from a pub where he was going to have a beer with friends. I understand when he says that wearing a turban is his religious compulsion, but what about the religious rule that he should not drink. I am confused....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sometimes we think we know better than The Guru. Amongst Sikhs more and more people have started to pick things out which suit them and abandon the others which they feel are not modernized enough or are to hard to do.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The most interesting aspect of this is that SALDEF who have done amazing work in the past are assisting this guy.

Now it is true that they simply are dealing with a confined legal/rights issue with respect to denial because of his dastar. It is also true that individuals practice faith in variations and that alone should not invalidate the significance of the practice. However, there are lines that once crossed do not constitute religious practice.

If a trimmed guy wants to get drinks, then he is not wearing a Sikh dastar. He is in fact wearing a cloth hat which does not hold religious significance and he can be asked to remove. In fact, I would say the someone wearing a cowboy hat would have a stronger argument for themselves to get entry to a bar for a drink because at least s/he would not be acting contrary to the purported belief.

Would SALDEF step in if someone was denied entry to a barber shop to get a hair cut because of their dastar? That is what they are doing here. This guy is taking his "wanting to get a drink while protecting his religious sikh turban" story to the media. He is making a mockery of sikhi via his stunning ignorance.

Would someone here please forward this to a SALDEF contact. And go easy on them, they deserve our full support for their amazing seva to date they've done more good than I will ever be able to do in a lifetime. I am not sure what they are thinking on this one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
he shouldnt be going to the bar in the irst place, so in a way you can say the bar owner did a good thing :)

I agree.

Just look at his picture and at what he is saying "beer with friends". A big time <banned word filter activated>.

If he had said a "soft drink" then that is a different matter.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Maybe he should this is a sign - Maharaj saved Joga Singh too when he was about to enter a brothel by being the night watchman at the door...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

but this wants an apology for not beiing allowed to enter a bar......so he hasnt realised anything....so i really dun care whether he gets an apology or not.....he got slap on his face but still refuse to learn

wat else shall i say?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

thats how bad it is i mean first off all like everyones said he shouldn't be going there anyway but the thing is he honestly thinks its absolutely fine and so do his parents that they're making a case out of it. Why is he wearing a turban or even more so how and why has he kept his kes with habits and parents like that. If only he was able to attain satsangat he'd still have a chance...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My Lord, even extremism has its' limits.

Just because the man trims his beard and was going with his boyz to have a beer he shouldn't receive a apology from the bar owner? That's ridiculous. The man is at least wearing a turban, and trying to represent as much as he can. Too bad not everyone can be like you lot people, jeez. Now I know why people think Sikhs are becoming to extreme now-a-days. How are you supposed to encourage people to come back into Sikhi if all you do is find faults in the people, logically think about it and tell me? rolleyes.gif

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

errmm...yeh...he shouldnt of have been in the pub anyway..serves him right..loll..the bar person did a good deed..RESPECT d_oh.gif ...haha

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
My Lord, even extremism has its' limits.

Just because the man trims his beard and was going with his boyz to have a beer he shouldn't receive a apology from the bar owner? That's ridiculous. The man is at least wearing a turban, and trying to represent as much as he can. Too bad not everyone can be like you lot people, jeez. Now I know why people think Sikhs are becoming to extreme now-a-days. How are you supposed to encourage people to come back into Sikhi if all you do is find faults in the people, logically think about it and tell me? rolleyes.gif

Its not about extremism.. Trust me..I have far too many limitations myself to even call myself a proper sikh. But it is about representing something. How would you feel if you see a turban wearing guy walking out of a strip club. Would you have the same reaction if this guy was turned away from a strip club?

Its hard when you tell someone that you are not suppossed to drink, and the reply comes back that they used to study with a turbaned sikh that used to love his beers. You see where I am getting at...

All of us have faced similar questions, so you know what I am talking about. The turban represents the most visible aspect of our religion. It doesn't matter whether you are trimmed, short, tall etc. You will be spotted no matter where you are because of your turban. So, our actions should be a bit more careful when we are wearing a turban.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

Terms of Use