Police have now confirmed a few new details regarding the Sikh Temple shooter in Oak Creek, Wisconsin. The tragedy happened around 10 in the morning, thankfully between services, so the facilities weren't completely full. The gunman apparently had some hatred toward the members of the temple, and appeared to have targeted only males.
The FBI is now investigating the incident as a form of domestic terror due to the nature of the attack. Six innocent victims were killed and three people were wounded, including the officer who was first on the scene. That officer possibly saved the lives of the other worshipers, as he exchanged gunfire and killed the attacker.
Details have emerged about the assailant: Police have confirmed that he was a white male, bald, around 40 years old, and bore a 9/11 tattoo. The man lived near the temple, which was built only five years ago in 2007, and authorities have searched the home for more clues behind the Sikh temple shooter's motive. Given the fact that at least three of the dead were religious leaders in the temple and wore turbans, it is reasonable to assume the attacker was trying to kill as many leaders as possible before being caught.
Since al Qaeda members brought a vicious attack to American soil, peaceful Sikhs have been victims of numerous race and religion-based attacks. Sikhs and Muslims practice two completely different faiths, which were established hundreds of years apart. In fact, Islam is a cousin of Christianity, and is actually one of the three major Abrahamic faiths, along with Judaism.
Sikhism, on the other hand, is closer to Hinduism, a completely different religion that originated in the Punjab region of India. Sikhs broke off from Hinduism about 500 years ago because followers did not agree with the caste system.
But it doesn't matter to fearful, paranoid, hate-filled Americans who carry guns and get 9/11 tattoos on their arms. For these particular people, anyone with brown skin who walks around in turbans or funny clothes is fair game for discrimination, violence, and death. These people are ignorant, for they don't want to learn about other people's faiths. All they care about is revenge, and if the skin is brown, then they're an apt target.
Don't think that assessment is correct? This writer knew a family in the Deep South who referred to people from India as "camel jockeys." The term is highly insulting, and is supposed to refer to people of Middle Eastern descent. India is not the Middle East, nor are camels native to the country.
It is ignorance such as this that breeds hostility and violence against people whose only crime is that they look different. The only solution to attacks of this nature is education and teaching tolerance, otherwise the killing and enmity will continue.