White House starts anti-bullying campaign for Sikhs and other minority groups

Years after the Sikh Temple shooting in Oak Creek, The White House has announced an initiative to reduce bullying for young Sikhs, Muslims, Asians, and Pacific Islanders. A study found they face the most bullying in the classroom. 

For Shehbaz Kalek, going to school has been torment over the years.

"My freshman year I went to school in Racine and I was bullied on a daily basis. I don't even want to get into details, it was pretty traumatizing."

He says his Sikh heritage made him a target.

"It was mostly because of the way I looked, my appearance, the way I acted, it wasn't as traditional as the American way."

A new White House campaign will create anti-bullying awareness for Sikh, Muslims, Pacific Islanders, and Asians. A minority survey found 67-percent of Sikh's wearing traditional garments were bullied.  The Sikh Coalition and Coalition of Asian Pacifics started the initiative. Blogs and videos filmed by celebrities will help to spread the awareness.

Chan Lee owner of JK Lee Blackbelt Academy experienced bullying, and his martial arts school has seen an increase in Middle Eastern Students, afraid, and wanting to learn self defense. 

Chan Lee says, "Kicking and punching isn't always the answer to defending yourself."

He started a program called 'The Bullying Expert.' He showed us a few verbal techniques to stop a bully from becoming physical. The first step is to apologize and back up. The next is the consequence reminder. He says remind your hostile attacker that you don't want to have to call police or trouble the police standing near by. Our bullying expert says humor is usually the most effective.

As for Kalek, he's just happy a national campaign will finally be helping kids, coming up in school behind him.

"It's good, should have been started a long time ago but better late than never."

Share this article: