December 12th, 2012 - The following post appears courtesy of Tom Perez, the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division
Last week, I had the great honor of visiting the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek, Wis., where I met with leaders of the gurdwara and the families who worship there. It is clear that the hate crime committed on Aug. 5, 2012, when six beloved people were murdered and others injured as they worshipped in the gurdwara, has had an indelible impact on the community of Oak Creek, and far beyond.
Yet it also is clear that although the gurdwara has witnessed the very worst of human kind, its members have reacted with the best of human kind — with courage, compassion and strength.
At a memorial service for the victims of the mass shooting in August, Attorney General Eric Holder said:
“Although we have been brought together by an unspeakable tragedy, we are bound together by far more. We are united . . . not only by a shared sense of loss, but also by a common belief in the healing power of faith, and in the universal principles that are glorified in our nation’s churches, synagogues, mosques, temples, gurdwaras, and other houses of worship; but also by the principles of compassion, kindness, tolerance, inclusion, and love.”
Visiting the gurdwara, the overwhelming message I took back from the congregation is one of unity – a resolve to work together, with members of every faith to foster understanding, and to ensure that such tragic acts of violence are never repeated. read more>>>