Canadian Poet Rupi Kaur Rejects White House Diwali Invitation Over Gaza Response

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November 7, 2023 

Canadian poet Rupi Kaur has made a bold statement by declining an invitation to a Diwali party hosted by the Biden administration due to their handling of the Israel-Hamas war. Kaur, the renowned author of “Milk and Honey,” expressed her disappointment with the administration’s stance on the ongoing conflict in Gaza.

In a statement shared on her social media accounts, Kaur expressed her surprise that the current administration would celebrate Diwali while simultaneously offering support for what she sees as “atrocities against Palestinians.” She explained, “I refuse any invitation from an institution that supports the collective punishment of a trapped civilian population.”

Kaur, who identifies as a Sikh woman, emphasized the significance of Diwali in the Sikh faith, known as Bandi Chhor Divas. For her, this holiday serves as a time for reflection on the struggle for freedom against oppression. It is a period of commemoration and introspection about the fight against injustice.

In her statement, Kaur called upon fellow South Asians in the United States to take a similar stand and hold the Biden administration accountable for their stance on the Gaza conflict. She highlighted the staggering civilian death toll in Gaza, which has now exceeded 10,000, and urged others to consider the human cost of the conflict.

Rupi Kaur’s decision to decline the Diwali party invitation underscores the complex and sensitive nature of international conflicts and their impact on individuals from various backgrounds. Her bold stance serves as a reminder that the celebration of cultural festivals can be intertwined with political and moral considerations.

As the debate over the Israel-Hamas conflict continues, Kaur’s refusal of the White House invitation adds to the voices advocating for a reevaluation of the U.S. government’s position on the matter. It remains to be seen how her decision will resonate with others and contribute to the ongoing discourse on this pressing global issue.

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