Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoes ‘Sikh Kirpan Bill’!
So, a suggestion for Governor to host a ‘Chai Summit’
The California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed the ‘Sikh Kirpan Bill’, a bill that was intended to educate law enforcement officers about the religious significance of ‘kirpans’. The Governor found the bill “unnecessary”, and therefore rejected it.
The Sikh community has been celebrating the earlier success of the same bill, when it was passed unanimously by the state lawmakers. This veto was particularly surprising given the bipartisan votes in favor of the bill in both houses of legislature earlier this year.
“This loss for the Sikh community is a reminder of our serious lack of political clout in this state. After months of hard work and 100 per cent support from our lawmakers, the Sikh voice was still not strong enough to overcome the whim of one man,” said Sikh Coalition Board chairman Prabhjot Singh.
To be clear, the Kirpan bill is not intended to allow or permit to carry the kirpan. The bill was focused only on educating the law enforcement departments about the Sikh tradition, and avoiding legal battles resulting from any meaningless arrests where police mistakes kirpan as a weapon.
The reason for the Governor’s veto seems to be that it is not necessary to pass a bill just for the sake of raising awareness.
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