Our rich Sikh history is soaked with the battles of strong Sikh Kaur warriors. Our mothers are strong Sikh warriors. Our grandmothers, our aunts, our sisters are all strong Sikh warriors. Yet, according to Merriam Webster, the word “warrior” is “a man engaged or experienced in warfare; broadly : a person engaged in some struggle or conflict.” There have been many men in our life and in Sikh history who have fit this description, but this definition excludes a very necessary and applicable group: women.
It is important to speak about these issues – no matter how little or insignificant they may seem – because we should not promote gender roles/stereotypes. The definition suggests people to view an image of a warrior as one that is only male or of masculine qualities. This depicts males to be fighters, leaders, strong, and aggressive, while undermining women by suggesting that they do not/cannot fit that description. Girls and boys should not be subjected to what is considered to be the proper way to act/look according to their gender and should be allowed to freely explore their identity without these constricting boxes. In fact, to change this definition, I sent a personal letter to Merriam Webster a month ago. I have not heard a reply back, but I urge you all to take the time and voice your concern here.