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"Sir, you have to take your turban off. This is the United States"

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by weswelker#83, Nov 21, 2008.

  1. weswelker#83

    weswelker#83 Rookie

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  2. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    There was no wrong done here. He has no right to wear a hat or turban into a chapel or anywhere else that has a rule against it. In my grandfather's house, you took your hat off when you came in or you waited outside.

    The crack about "America' was stupid. They should have simply referred to the policy that was clearly posted. The Indo-American dude was wrong and disrespectful.

    "The mission building contains a chapel, and employees consider the entire building "the Lord's house," Weeks said. A sign in the lobby outlines the policy against hats or other headwear inside.

    "We have policy and he didn't want to abide by it," said Weeks. "He gave the receptionist a bad time and decided to do a vengeance thing because he didn't get his own way. This was nothing to do with the turban, nothing to do with his faith."
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2008
  3. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Rookie

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    I can see both instances happening in America, but to your point, if there's a policy, the man has no rights. You don't make exceptions to policies.

    I walked into a clubhouse at a very exclusive New England private country club this summer and was asked to remove my hat. Man, I had hat-head AND....I have a bald spot on the back of my head I don't like showing, but I still took it off. :confused2:
  4. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    Right...so can I. Not saying that this guy wouldn't get mugged and beaten for wearing a turban in some places in America. Hell, there's drunken racists in nearly every state and town. That would suck, but he had no beef with these people, and sounds like they have none with him, either.
  5. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Rookie

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    Standing up for individual rights is...well, it's righteous. But the days of being anti-establishment are over. Once we become one of those with a cause against everything, then we lose all effectiveness to make a point and get people to listen.

    If we rail against everything majority and scream for the minority, no one wants to listen.

    Today, you have to pick your fights and make damn sure your cause and your information is right. And at the same time, we have to remember that not every cause worth fighting for is "liberal". There are many conservative causes worth fighting for and if that ruffles your feathers, then you don't have a truly open mind. Neither democrats nor republicans have the market on righteousness cornered.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2008
  6. weswelker#83

    weswelker#83 Rookie

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    I like how they try defending themselves by saying it's a facility policy. Cause, you know, I usually try enforcing policy by pointing out the country in which we are currently living. Tools.

    Would they have asked the same from an Orthodox Jew?



    "This year, he wanted to see where his donation was going."

    Try the Salvation army next time. They literally and directly help people and are not concerned with pointy hats and towels on the head.
  7. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Don't know where the policy "no hats indoors" was posted.

    Maybe I breezed through the story.

    Anyway, having been insulted by this charity... did you guys miss this part? He was there to give them CHARITY?... he can rectify the fact that they choose to insult him by giving elsewhere.

    This comes down to customer service. You don't tell someone that their headgear is forbidden in America, to express that within a given building one is expected to remove all headgear.

    So obviously, he is a bad match for that particular charity. Given their goon's reaction to a Sikh's turban, I think I'd find a more charitable charity too.

    PFnV

    edit: A sign in the lobby did express the policy. So yep, he should certainly have split after asking the question and getting an answer. The correct answer is not that his headgear is forbidden in America.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  8. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    From his point of view, you have a point. From their point of view, they have a policy. I bet he was the first Sikh to walk through the door and I'd bet there hasn't been an orthodox Jew so far. I'm betting that the next day (assuming all involved are rational, decent people) both parties over-reacted and wish they had been more considerate of each other's situation. Being Saturday, I prefer to be optimistic.
  9. PatsFanInVa

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    Look, it's certainly not front-page news that someone decided to make a "you're not welcome in this country never mind this church" type of comment, but it was ignorant enough that it bears some *****in' about.

    I think the devil's in the details.

    I can imagine this:
    "I'm here to give you charity you ungrateful superstitious ignoramous."
    "Sir this is the United States, you have to take your turban off."

    I can much more easily imagine this:
    "Sir you have to take your turban off..."
    "I won't be here long... I can't take my turban off, it's part of my religion."
    "Sir, you have to take your turban off. This is the United States."

    Now, it's possible others here are imagining conversation 1, and I am imagining conversation 2. I could see where if he's trying to get his charity business done, and he sees this sign, he is wondering whether they mean take off your normal everyday average fashion statement/protection from the elements hat, or if they mean the abandon-your-religious-identity hat too.

    If he is asking, and explaining the difference, I could see where the manager of that facility would say to a reporter he was "giving the staff a hard time." I've seen too much similar bullcrap to think it impossible or even unlikely.

    But yeah Wistah, at the end of the day there is a possibility that he's militantly asserting a RIGHT to wear a turban indoors based on his willingness to give charity. I just don't think that's what's happening here.

    PFnV
  10. sdaniels7114

    sdaniels7114 Rookie

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    Whatever happened to 'when in Rome...'
  11. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    I guess I'm a dick for not recognizing the importance some people place on identity symbols and how tenaciously cling to them. Like the Troy Brown jersey I wear to Ralph Wilson Stadium or the Yaz jersey I walk around NYC in (on purpose!).
  12. weswelker#83

    weswelker#83 Rookie

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    They might as well put up a sign saying "We do not welcome Sikhs or Jews in this church". I bet that would go over well. Because religious bigotry always does.

    Rules, like laws, aren't absolute. They should be open to interpretation given extenuating circumstances, like tolerance for other religions. In fact, I would expect that a church, of all places, would be open to practicing a little tolerance towards someone else who is also devoutly religious. Would it really have killed them to make an exception, given the circumstances? Would it have cost them all that much to show a little understanding?

    A turban is not merely a "hat". It's a deeply religious thing for Sikhs -- it's literally a part of who they are. And you're talking about a piece of cloth that's like 9 feet long. You can't just take it off, duck in, and plop it back on. Never mind the fact that it'd be like asking you or I to remove our pants. If that guy is anything like my Sikh friend, there's zero chance of his taking his clothes off in public.

    Bottom line is that asking him to remove his turban is essentially asking asking him not to be him. I doubt the church guy realizes (or respects) the significance of the other fellow's turban. It's not just "headwear", it's part of who he is.

    http://www.wingluke.org/pages/sikhc...Photos)/Western World/1_Sikhs in Military.JPG
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  13. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I'd like to see Britney Spears go over to Iran and wear a G-String for a bathing suit, they wouldn't ask her to get dressed they would stone her to death.
  14. TheGodInAGreyHoodie

    TheGodInAGreyHoodie Rookie

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    I see this as a non-issue.

    Both acted fully within in their rights. I think the church made a mistake in turning away a donor.

    I was once in a similar situation.

    Some weekends I would donate my time to the local habitat for humanity. Which is a Christian organization that builds houses for the homeless. I am not Christian but I care about the homeless. I was raised Jewish but my actual religious beliefs are agnoistic.

    They would start the day with a short prayer led by the leader. And it would start with a request for folks to remove your hat. I would leave my baseball cap on while everyone else removed theirs. The #2 person would give me the evil eye through out the prayer service. I didn't join in the prayer I just stood their silently.

    About the 5th time she decided she had it with my disrespect and demanded I remove my hat before the prayer started. I responded that I was Jewish and that I specifically put a hat on when I pray. She pointed out that the H4H was a Christian organization. I responded I wasn't I was there for the prayer service or the Christianity but to work on the houses for homeless. She told me I need remove my hat or leave.

    I said okay, and started to walk away. At which point the leader told her to stop. And told me I was welcome to stay with my hat on.

    Had they chosen to put the religious aspect of the organization first that would have been fully within their rights. They decided they would rather have my free labor.

    During the course of the day pretty much every single person in the group came up to me and said they though what she did was wrong and that I should not judge all of H4H by her.

    And while I am not so religious that removing my hat would have undermined my own faith my attitude was if I wasn't welcome as a Jew then I was going to stay and pretend I was a Christian.

    The mission in this case has every right to insist that those who enter conform, but after this story they will have a much harder time raising money non-Christians.
  15. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Rookie

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    You could easily turn around each of your points and use them as counter-points.

    "It's not just a piece of cloth" Well, actually it is. If hat gives someone their religiouls identity every minute of everyday without exception, there is something wrong with that religious practice.

    "Rules, like laws, aren't absolute" Exactly, so his religious rule isn't absolute either....it works both ways.

    "practicing a little tolerance towards someone else who is also devoutly religious" Again, you're right. If one enters another religious house of worship, one practices tolerance of THEIR rules, not vice-versa.

    The only significance of a turbin is to the wearer. He must accept that fact. If I had someone wearing one of those in front of me at the theater and it blocked my view, I would ask him to remove it. I don't care the purpuse behind wearing, it's blocking the view I paid for. I guarantee you he'd remove it, move to another seat of if it was sold out, he' leave the theater.

    P.S. I will agree that saying "this is America" was ignorant and stupid on the part of the woman.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  16. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Rookie

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    This is total bull crap hoodie.

    But you said you're agnostic. So you were just being defiant hoodie? If I was at a Jewish event and asked to remove my hat or just saw everyone else doing it, I would easily conform. You obviously lied when you said

    "I responded that I was Jewish and that I specifically put a hat on when I pray"

    You're an agnostic who prays? Why did you lie to the lady? Taking your hat off does not signify any but simple respect. Do you actually believe you were the only agnostic in attendance?:rolleyes: Because you were not there as a Jew as you have already admitted. You can't change you position due to the circumstance you're in.

    P.S. After re-thinking the above, I realize you can be agnostic religiously, but a faithful Jew culturally. The Jewish faith is different than any other in that respect, so I was wrong to say you lied above and offer you my sincere apology.

    I would have edited it and removed those statements, but that would have been taking the easy way out.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  17. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Agnostic is not atheist.

    If one does not know whether there's a God, it makes plenty of sense that one would accompany one's friends/family to places of worship. Since in Judaism the temple/synagog has no special "sacred" status, one has the same commandments when one is saying a shabbos brocha as when one is in the synagog.

    In support of the "when in Rome..." theory...

    I know for a fact there are Jews who pray as part of their family as much or more than to talk to God. There are Jews who are uncertain at times and more certain at other times. Were I going into a synagog during times that I described myself as agnostic, and the custom there was to wear a kipah, I would do so. And so would visiting Christians, despite the fact that they established the opposite custom for their own faith.

    This is not, however, the point.

    First of all PR, you have no idea what you're talking about if you think you now "know" enough about Hoodie to say that YOU'RE AGNOSTIC SO IT DOESN'T MATTER.

    Your statement is just ignorant of facts on the ground. Period, as in you don't get it and I don't expect you to. It's not something you can argue from some theory. This was the custom of his people he learned from birth, and, as opposed to some (if not all) atheists, he never made a definitive declaration against said custom or the God it honored.

    This idiotic tendency to mentally construct other peoples as some sort of derivative or mirror image of Christianity is neither new nor particularly useful in understanding other peoples.

    You can say until you're blue in the face "If I were in Hoodie's place..." but you will never be and have never been.

    As a white guy I try to keep in mind I can't say "Hey if I were a black guy what I would do/think/say is..."

    That's because as a member of a dominant majority you do not understand the viewpoint of a minority. It takes a great deal of effort to do so, and you process it as "treason" to your "own" people. Down here, if you make that effort, you use to be called a term ending with the suffix "-lover."

    I.e., you are a race traitor if you abandon the reactive attitude of the majority group and try to understand the point of a minority group.

    It's obvious that our usual way of processing relilgious differences is identical. Some among the majority can "get" the minority, and some can't.

    Personally I find your statement about Hoodie's story ugly and repugnant. Again, Hoodie was voluntarily giving to those who needed. And in God's name, this "church lady" was telling him God didn't want his work for the poor, because he was the wrong religion.

    The best thing in the story was the attitudes of the rest of the H4H guys, who brought him back and made him feel welcome.

    You're mistaking his own personal feeling about removing a hat, for a statement against the removal of hats.

    And think about that above sentence, and try to tell me that's the issue when there were poor people who needed a freaking house. TELL me God is more concerned about your hat. TELL me that woman was right to make an issue of it.

    PFnV
  18. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    And by the way, I have never, ever seen a man removed from a temple or synagog for not wearing the kipah. I have seen men shown a little box by the door where you can pick one up if you don't have your own, but I have never seen anybody kicked out for not picking them up (and I have seen a few who didn't get it or perhaps had something against wearing it.) Never.

    PFnV
  19. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Rookie

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    My point PFiVA is that we get too worked up about cloth and tradition...in my opinion. No cloth or tradition IS or defines one's faith from any perspective.

    The God of any faith does not track who wore a hat or turbin and who did not...nor does he care. I have issue with rules of my own religion as well.

    But ALL faiths can only be defined by our willingness to do God's will and our reliance upon that strength. Gathering together as one to worship is not faith, it is man-made RELIGION. Faith is more important than any religion...at least to the believer.

    I understand what agnosticism is. But hoodie made it a point to say he was agnostic, so he must have been making a point. You can tell me how important putting on or taking off a hat is until you're blue in the face, it doesn't mean you're right. Think about that sentence.

    Now, regarding your suggestion that I re-read and think about,

    "You're mistaking his own personal feeling about removing a hat, for a statement against the removal of hats."

    And so I have. If I attend a jewish event and go along with their tradition (whatever one it may be), it is the same as a jew attending a christian event and going along with their tradition. To say otherwise is ludacrous. And I am certain God would be happy with showing other faiths respect. It is a good act.

    Now, having said all that, had I been at the habitat for humanity event, I would have been with hoodie telling him the woman was wrong for telling him he should remove his hat.

    I agree that no one should tell anyone what to do. My point is that the individual should have flexibility with tradition or norms and be willing to show our hosts respect for their traditions.

    I realize we may not agree on this, but that's ok....it's America!;)
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008
  20. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Rookie

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    Holy CRAP! (emphasis on CRAP!)

    What a pile of condascending, patronizing garbage! Complete and utter bullshyte! (IMO) Since when have you been so concerned with someone's expression of their beliefs? You can't have every way.

    A turban is a peice of cloth a Sikh wears on his head. This Sikh guy was a willing participant in a wierd retro-cultural display of symbolism that is outdated, to say the least. To say a turban defines the essence of a person is, at the very least, insulting to that person. This human being would be the same if he woke up tomorrow without the turban. He might go through a period of trauma (oh! the drama!) and maybe his head would be cold for a while, but he'd still know himself. What a load of crap. My mother wears a crucifix neclace. If she lost it she would still be her. Who's to say I might not have a harder time if I lost my Brown jersey?


    Get real!
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2008

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