Honoring the Memory of Balbir Singh SodhiSeptember 14th, 2011
Ten years ago, on September 15, Balbir Singh Sodhi was shot and killed outside of his Mesa, Arizona, gas station in retaliation for the attacks on September 11. He was killed because he had a turban and beard. He was the first murder victim due to post-9/11 backlash.
Balbir Singh Sodhi represents all the victims of post-9/11 backlash, from those who lost their lives to those who continue to suffer from bullying, harassment and discrimination today. As we honor his memory, let us reflect on the common concern and unity we felt with our neighbors at that time.
How You Can Honor His Memory
SALDEF hopes that all Americans take heed of words of Balbir’s brother, Rana, and “bring the whole community together…take care of our extended community and to work to understand one another better. And when I say ‘community,’ I…mean…the whole American community.”
The Sodhi family and the Arizona interfaith community have transformed the tragic death of Balbir Singh Sodhi into a movement for unity, understanding, and respect. We applaud them for their efforts and call on all Americans to join them in similar efforts across the country.