Then, there are other Hindu important festivals Holi, Durga Pooja, Ganesh Chathuri which I celebrate with the rest of Hindu community while Christmas, Id, Easter, Hanukkah etc with the global community that resides in United States.
But it is difficult at times, when we face discrimination at work place or called with funny names for our complexion, accent etc. However, these discriminatory acts were rare before 9/11 and even after the terrorist attacks on Twin Towers; we haven't been victim of any serious racism or prejudice compared to what our fore parents encountered when they moved first to the United States in early 1900s.
The history of my community, Asian Indians, goes back to early 20th century when the first group of Indians from the province of Punjab arrived in America and worked as millers and farmers in California and Washington. They were mainly "Sikhs"-followers of Sikhism, a religion originated by Guru Nanak. They faced much difficulties and racist attacks because of their illiteracy and poor English-speaking skills. Associations such as Asiatic Exclusion League made serious efforts to prevent further immigration and property ownership of Indians.( Vinay Lal, 1999)
The Sikhs were followed by large number of Indian students who demanded Indian independence overtly. They even formed their own political party to promote and forward their political ideas and demand for Independence. However, America who was strong and old ally of British, saw it as conspiracy of the Germany to overrule the British power in India-a colony within the British Empire. Thus organized attacks were made on these Indian students and successful prosecution of Indians took place.
To add to the woes of Indian community, in 1923 the Supreme Court of United States ruled that Indians were ineligible for citizenship of the United States and that citizenship was only reserved for "whites" with European origins. They were also subjected to the Alien Land Law which prevented them from owning and leasing land and forced them to transfer their lands to the white Americans. As a result, the number of Indians sharply dropped from 10,000 in 1914 to 1,476 in 1940 in California alone.(Vinay Lal, 1999)
But different Indian organization in America continued to fight for their rights to immigration and naturalization. By 1946, President Truman returned the right to immigrate and naturalize through Luce-Celler Act 1946. ("Indian American")
After that, Indians actively participated in politics fighting for the end of British power in India. The most prominent among these politicians was Dalip Singh Saund who was also elected for US House of Representatives from California in 1956 and was also reelected for a 2nd and 3rd term. ("Indian American")
Soon the number of Asian Indians grew well above 175000 (1975) and they demanded for minority status within American population. The Census Bureau declared them as a new category of minority group known as "Asian Indians". However, the conditions and performance of the existing Indian community wasn't impressive, to say the least. Unemployment and poverty was prevalent with most Indian employed for odd jobs as taxi drivers, gas-stations workers