Sunday, March 05, 2006

Dialogue's Reward

The NYTs profiles Brooklyn Sheik Reda Shata this weekend. It's a fascinating study of what this Egyptian born cleric brought to his neighborhood when he emigrated to the U.S. shortly after 9/11 and what America has done to him. My favorite quote of Shata is this:
"America transformed me from a person of rigidity to flexibility," said Mr. Shata, speaking through an Arabic translator. "I went from a country where a sheik would speak and the people listened to one where the sheik talks and the people talk back."