Racist Attacks Cause Sikh Youth to Question What They Believe

November 23, 2006

Source: SikhSangat News


Western intolerance of religious symbols and a series of street attacks are prompting young men to shed their hair and turbans. Many Sikhs cut their hair when they become teenagers in an effort to fit in with their local surroundings. Sikh students say that increasing numbers of racially motivated attacks have had a significant impact on their attitudes.

Dalwinder Singh, an executive board member of a student group, said: “We do get a lot of young kids trimming their hair because they see how they are treated.

“For example, they find that they can’t take part in certain things at school and they just don’t want to stand out. And the attacks that have been in the news have definitely had an effect. Teenagers just want to fit in with what society is doing,” Mr Singh said.

Harwinder Singh, a representative of the Sikh Education Council, said: “In the past five to ten years, especially after September 11 terrorist attacks, more and more younger Sikhs began to trim their hair.