Throw the Book at National Textbook Publishers: THE SIKH COALITION
YOUR Help is Urgently Needed
"In my world history class, I read that Sikhs are terrorists." said Jaslin Kaur.
Can you imagine your child coming home to tell you that she learned that her religious community, her family, her sangat, were labeled as terrorists in her textbook?
That's exactly what happened to Jaslin Kaur, who attends Mt. Pleasant High School in San Jose, California, USA.
As we all know, educators often teach from the textbook without bothering to verify the accuracy of the information they are teaching. They incorrectly assume that if it's in the textbook, it must be true.
We can only fix a problem when we know what is out there.
How many textbooks are our nation’s children reading that have incorrect information about Sikhs?
WE NEED YOUR HELP
Today, we are asking you to look through your child's social studies textbook and find any mention of Sikhs or Sikhism. It does not matter if the information is true or false. We want to know EVERY mention of Sikhs in these books. Then, please click on the line at the end of this article and fill out the form.
It is very important that you attach scans of each page that has information on Sikhs or Sikhism.
Don't have a scanner? No problem! You can also take pictures of the pages and upload those images as well.
“Sikhism is a branch of Hinduism….”
This inaccurate statement is found in multiple textbooks that students read across the country. Textbooks are an educational tool meant to provide accurate information, but with statements like this one, they often perpetuate misinformation and promote stereotypes.
We need to act quickly.
Once schools close for summer vacation, your child will no longer have access to his/her textbooks. It is important that you take this action now.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions. Thank you for your seva!
URGENT: PLEASE HELP US CREATE A “MOST WANTED” LIST OF OFFENDING TEXTBOOK PUBLISHERS.
Please CLICK here for submitting your textbook information.
THE SIKH COALITION
May 19, 2013
Conversation about this article
1: Jaswinder Singh (Gurgaon, India), May 19, 2013, 10:36 AM.
As pointed out on this very site not too long ago, Indira was killed -- if we are to believe the government's own reports -- by members of the country's elite security unit which had been trained and finely honed to defend the laws and institutions of the country. If the woman who had already spent time in jail for electoral crimes and had suspended the Indian constitution and ruled the country as an absolute dictator for two years, was executed by the country's top defenders, how did the latter suddenly become terrorists? I agree with The Sikh Coalition. We need to weed out all of such incorrect and malicious references in school books everywhere. Thank you for taking on this long overdue task.
2: Gurjendra Singh (Maryland, USA), May 19, 2013, 12:28 PM.
Thanks to The Sikh Coalition for this initiative. The major problem is with the authors of these books. Because, 1) they are influenced by the Indian government controlled media, and 2) the Indian Constitution continues to muddy the waters by insulting Sikhs by labeling them as Hindus.
3: T. Sher Singh (Mount Forest, Ontario, Canada), May 19, 2013, 12:45 PM.
Text-book writers almost never do original research. To a large degree, they cut and paste or regurgitate information they glean from existing reference materials, such as encyclopaediae, and, of course, the fount of all knowledge today - the internet. Therefore, for this extremely important project to be truly effective, we need to have a parallel monitoring of, a) the internet, particularly Wikipedia and its various clones; and b) the encyclopaediae and reference books that traditionally attract secondary researchers.
4: Ajit Singh Batra (Pennsville, New Jersey, USA..), May 20, 2013, 4:43 PM.
The Tenth Master is spelled as Guru GoVind Singh by Hindus. But actual name is Guru GoBind Singh. Using V instead of a B is intentional, and is promoted by Hindus. It sankritizes the name. My teacher used to point out that when the struggle for Punjabi Suba was going on in the 50's and 60's, Hindus made it a point to mispell Sikh names and terms - whether using Hindi or English. My point is, we Sikhs must point out such screw-ups and get them corrected.
5: Didar Josun (Canada), May 20, 2013, 7:48 PM.
I just googled the words "Sikh terrorist" and this link came up: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Terrorism_in_India. Another one is this, which says that the whole Akhand Kirtani Jatha is a terrorist organization and Gurbachana Narakdhari is a genuine sadh and so is his organization. I am going to report this to The Sikh Coalition so that someone can try and have these removed/corrected.
6: Gurpreet Singh (San Jose, California, USA), May 21, 2013, 6:42 PM.
I looked for the San Jose Gurdwara on Yelp.com to see what the public thought of the gurdwara. The listing was categorized under "Hindu Temple". This got me curious and I searched for many other gurdwaras throughout the US. I discovered that right around half of them were listed under the "Hindu Temples" category. I submitted the edits on the ones I discovered. But part of the problem is that there is no sub category for gurdwaras under "Religious Organizations". Everyone should contact Yelp.com and other similar sites to have them add a proper category and option.
7: Paul (USA), May 22, 2013, 5:41 PM.
So much out there. Check this one: http://www.stormfront.org/forum/t645749/
8: Roop Dhillon (London, United Kingdom), May 24, 2013, 7:14 AM.
The problem lies in that we still consider ourselves Indian, and it is the national Indian state which is supplying these distortions as facts to the west and the world.