Sue me, sue you blues!

Kirpan in sheath

Kirpan in sheath

No kidding! Just when one thought it was getting better regarding assimilation, religious tolerance, and critical thought, we are reminded that it only takes a spark to get a fire going. What is it with people? What is about people who use the resources of others, as well as their own, to engage the judicial system for the pursuit of money?

And folks I am dreadfully serious about this claim. We are not being faced with real life civil liberties being violated here. In addition, this certainly is not a cause of discrimination; hence, how could there possibly be a law suit and case over these ‘non’-issues? Cutting to the quick.

An Indian-American Sikh woman has sued the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for allegedly violating her religious freedom by prohibiting her from wearing kirpan to her job as a revenue agent.

Kawaljeet Kaur Tagore, who worked as a revenue agent at the Mickey Leland Federal Building in downtown Houston, sued her employer, IRS, in Houston federal court on Tuesday with the aid of Sikh coalition and the DC-based Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and Houston civil rights attorney Scott Newar.

Kawaljeet Kaur Tagore, 35, has filed the discrimination case after she was told in July 2006 that she could not wear her kirpan. “There’s never been any allegation that she had somehow taken the kirpan and used it as a weapon – that’s not what its purpose is,” Newar said. “It’s a symbolic religious article that Sikhs have carried for centuries. It’s like a Cross, it’s like a Star of David, it’s like any other religious ornament. It just happens to have a blade,” the civil rights attorney added.

If this was really-in reality-the issue and the heart of the matter we don’t believe there would be much difficulty for discernment whatsoever. By the by the issue here is that someone is wearing what could be construed as a ‘weapon’ to work. I ask everyone: Where is the discrimination?

The kirpan has both a physical function, as a defensive weapon, as well as a symbolic function. Physically it is an instrument of “Ahimsa” or non-violence. The principle of ahimsa is to actively prevent violence, not to simply stand by idly whilst violence is being done. To that end, the kirpan is a tool to be used to prevent violence from being done to a defenseless person when all other means to do so have failed. Symbolically, the kirpan represents the power of truth to cut through untruth. It is the cutting edge of the enlightened mind.

Come on people! The purpose(s) of this ‘religious ornament’ are set out. There is nothing different about this instance and the general population carrying guns to prevent violent crimes, or in the event one was involved in a violent crime one would be more able to defend themselves.

One size fits all?

One size fits all?

 The problem is multi-faceted: On the one hand we have a person crying discrimination for what? Of the second part we have a person or group of persons wanting to not align themselves with the law of carrying weapons under the guise of religion! Thirdly, we need to have attorneys and judges drawing a line in the sand and rather than saying the proverbial “We’ve got a good case here…” and start saying “I will not bog down the legal system with such frivolousness.”




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