By: Donald V. Watkins
Copyrighted and Published on December 29, 2023
Dear Nikki Haley,
In case you did not know it, you are not "white." You are "colored."
You are an American citizen, whose parents -- Ajit Singh Randhawa and Raj Kaur Randhawa -- were Sikh immigrants from Amritsar, Punjab, India. Your birth name is Nimarata Nikki Randhawa.
Nikki is your middle name. Haley is your married name. The name “Nikki Haley” sounds "white" but it does not make you "white."
In the minds of most Americans, your bloodline determines your race. If you have a drop of "colored" blood in your veins, most Americans view you as "colored." Until the 1967 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Loving v. Virginia, the "one-drop rule" was backed by the force of law in America.
Your parents immigrated from India to Canada in 1964 after your father received a scholarship offer from the University of British Columbia. After he received his PhD degree in 1969, your father moved his family to South Carolina to become a professor of biology at Voorhees College, a historically black institution in Denmark, South Carolina. Your father retired from teaching in 1998.
Despite a long history of claiming to be "Aryan" or "white," the U.S. States Supreme Court unanimously ruled in the case of United States v. Bhagat Singh Thind, 261 U.S. 204 (1923) that Sikh Indians like you are not "white." Read the court case for yourself.
You are “colored,” just like me. Within the "colored" world, I am a mixture of African descendants, Native-American ancestors, and Caucasian immigrants from Scotland and Ireland.
You damn sure do not have the “Aryan racial purity” that fellow Sikh Bhagat Singh Thind argued in his case, and the Supreme Court soundly rejected.
By the way, a black college gave your Sikh father the ability to feed, clothe, and shelter his family, including you, your two brothers, and your sister. For this, you should be eternally and publicly grateful.
In 1969, rampant racial discrimination against “colored” people in South Carolina (and elsewhere in the South) prevented your highly-educated father from working at a historically white college or university.
So, the next time somebody on the campaign trail asks you about the Civil War, please tell them the truth. Tell them you are the child of “colored” immigrants who invaded America by coming across its northern board with Canada. Tell them a black college was the only place where your "colored" father could teach in 1969.
Tell them that the Civil War was about the enslavement of blacks of African descent. They were chattel property, just like horses, cows, dogs, and other animals that could be bought and sold at-will, or killed without any criminal consequences. The war was fought because most Americans wanted to end slavery.
Tell them the true history of Sikhs from India and how your family was mistreated when they first came to the United States.
Never deny your Sikh heritage and family’s story for anybody, or for any reason.
Barack Obama proved that Americans will elect a president of color, twice. You don’t have to pretend to be "white" to win the presidency. If you do, your presidential campaign will "crash and burn" just like former Louisiana governor Piyush "Bobby" Jindal’s 2016 presidential campaign.
As you know, Bobby Jindal’s parents were immigrants from the same place in India that your parents came from. Like you, Jindal pretended he was "white" when, in fact, he is “colored.”
You and your progeny will always be viewed as “colored," especially if you continue pandering to and perpetuating the willful ignorance of American history for selfish and narrow-minded political gain.
In the end, winning is not about election outcomes. It is all about being true to yourself.
Donald V. Watkins