Over the previous two years, there have been over 53,000 references of caste in American media. These are used to advocate for anti-caste discrimination legislation. They are based on the Cisco Caste Case. It combines Equality Labs’ 2016 poll asserting widespread caste prejudice in the United States. In June 2020, the CRD (California Civil Rights Department) filed a complaint on behalf of “John Doe,” who identified as a Dalit and accused his “Brahmin” superiors of caste discrimination. However, court documents demonstrate that the CRD purposefully concealed the fact that the principal accused CEO, whom the CRD forcefully defines as a “Hindu Brahmin,” was publicly irreligious. And that he gave each of the group’s top leadership posts to a different Meritorious Dalit first. This was before there were any allegations of caste prejudice!
Disgusting Smear Campaigns Against American Hindus
The CRD includes the very subjective, unscientific, and non-randomised Equality Labs study from 2016. They cite disturbing numbers such as “one in every four Dalits in the United States has been raped or physically assaulted by upper-caste Hindus.” This number raises warning lights right away. The use of these statistics to push for caste-based policies in various institutions in the United States. This is specially when there are already broad anti-discriminatory laws in place that provide protection.
It is not only borderline criminal, but also unconstitutional, and violates Hindu Americans’ constitutional rights to Due Process and Equal Protection.
According to the 2020 Carnegie Endowment poll, reported caste prejudice is not a significant influence in community relations among Indian Americans in the United States and is too minor to be assessed statistically. Respondents who did not declare their caste identification were also excluded from the data set. As a result, it is possible that the sample does not completely represent the South Asian American community. It may tilt in favour of people with strong caste beliefs.” Despite these polls, Harvard, California State, and UC Davis continue to rely on Equality Labs.
Matter of Grave Concern
Hindu students are bound to face discrimination as a result of inflammatory caste resolutions that smear and single out Hindus inappropriately. This happens usually under broad anti-discriminatory protections are already available under California (and US) law. It is fueled by an unresolved and still pending case. Further, the CRD’s activist collaborators with questionable data and thin arguments make it worse.
Hindu Americans are concerned about their career prospects. They are caught in the net of caste-based insinuations and projected as belonging to an inequitable religion. It will degrade Hindus’ image and undermine confidence among employees.
It will violate the right to freedom of religion and self-identification, and it will caste-classify and even criminalise people based on their surnames. This is frighteningly similar to colonial periods in India. People were deemed criminals at birth based on their surnames under the Criminal Tribes Act of 1871. Immigrant visa holders who are legally committed to a firm are especially prone to such workplace charges.
USA is one of those nations that infringes and haunts other nations and identities. Seeing their nefarious fundings and motives, it is imperative that these discriminatory practices are highlighted to the public for better awareness.