Sikh Ballers Seek to Dunk and Don Turbans
Lakhpreet Kaur, a Sikh-American writing on the FaithStreet website, argues that the July decision of FIBA, the international basketball governing body, to ban players from wearing turbans should be overturned. She notes that FIBA believes turbans are “dangerous” and violate FIBA’s rule that players “shall not wear equipment (objects) that may cause injury to other players.”
Kaur notes that Amritpal Singh and Amjyot Singh, who play for the Indian national basketball team, had to doff their turbans before India played Japan on July 12 at the Asia Cup in China. Kaur recalls that her husband, Darsh Preet Singh, wore a turban when he played NCAA basketball for Trinity University. She notes:
The most touching thing about the NCAA allowing Darsh to play basketball with his turban was the impact it had on Sikh children from across the globe, who started to look up to Darsh as someone who blazed the path for them. Now, everywhere he goes, they want to take a photo with him, get his autograph, or chat with him, because he showed them what was possible for them. It showed children that all can excel and make their dreams come true. It showed us that the world is not as hateful as portrayed again and again in the media and that individuals will be accepted for who they are.
Kaur writes that because of the #LetSikhsPlay movement, FIBA will reconsider its decision in August.