Convocation with Arjun Singh Sethi

12 May 2023

Arjun Singh Sethi is a community activist, civil rights lawyer, and writer based in Washington, D.C. He works closely with Muslim, Arab, South Asian, and Sikh communities and is an expert in policing, the war on terror, and racial and religious profiling. He also advises foundations and nonprofits on rapid-response organizing, advocacy campaigns, and public policy. Sethi is particularly active on domestic and international surveillance issues and prearrest police civilian encounters, including consensual stops, predictive policing, location tracking, biometric data collection and countering violent extremist programs.

Sethi’s work has appeared in numerous national outlets, including CNN, The Guardian, Politico Magazine, USA Today, and The Washington Post, and he has been widely quoted in print, radio and television, including by The New York Times, The Independent, BBC World Radio, and NPR. In the wake of the 2016 presidential election, Sethi traveled the country and met with a diversity of people and documented the hate they experienced in connection with the election. In his book, American Hate: Survivors Speak Out, survivors tell their stories in their own words.

Sethi presently serves as co-chair of the American Bar Association’s National Committee on Homeland Security, Terrorism, and Treatment of Enemy Combatants and has served as a legal observer across the world. He began his career as a government affairs and litigation associate at the international law firm of Covington & Burling in Washington, D.C., where he represented victims of domestic violence, asylum-seekers, national security detainees, and criminal defendants on death row. Sethi is a graduate of New York University Law School and the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University.

Representative Publications:

  • American Hate: Survivors Speak Out (The New Press, 2018)
  • “Attacks like Portland’s Will Keep Happening Unless We All Fight White Supremacy,” The Washington Post, May 29,
  • “What the Trump Camp Gets Wrong on Immigration Registry,” CNN, November 18, 2016
  • “The FBI Needs To Stop Spying on Muslim Americans,” Politico Magazine, March 29, 2016
  • “Don’t Let Hate Crimes Persist In America,” CNN, October 22, 2015
  • “Obama Says He Supports Ahmed Mohamed, But His Policies Don’t,” The Washington Post, September 18, 2015
  • “The Un-American Way To Tackle Extremism,” CNN, July 14, 2015″US Drone Complex Bureaucratizes Murder,” Al Jazeera America, May 18, 2015
  • “The U.S. Government Can Brand You a Terrorist Based on a Facebook Post,” The Guardian, August 30, 2014
  • “A Chance To Limit Spying on Americans,” CNN, August 15, 2014

Fri, May 12, 2023 • 10:50am – 11:50am • Skinner Memorial Chapel