Good relationships lower walls,
lick differences, create success
Thursday, 26 August 2010
"Dialogue is a bridge.
Difference can lead to walls
in which you keep safe;
walls in which you hold others out.
Dialogue, on the contrary, is a bridge.
Through dialogue you can chink away at walls;
dialogue is an effort to meet another person.
Consider the neighbor to whom you don't talk;
consider the nations with which we are in conflict.
Efforts at, and skills in dialogue are necessary
to achieve greater unity and more peace."
= = 1 = =
Muslim and Jew
bridge to lead
Teaneck, New Jersey is a small but powerful oasis of hope and inspiration.
Thirty percent of its residents are Jewish, and their new mayor, Mohammed Hameeduddin, is a practicing Muslim.
His Deputy Mayor Adam Gussen is an Orthodox Jew.
They communicate well.
Working together they keep this community not only intact but flourishing.
Mayor Hameeduddin says Teaneck "is an incubator for understanding."
Teaneck is a cultural rainbow of restaurants and shops.
The myriad sounds of prayer that ring out from the town make are a source of pride for the diverse constituency within Teaneck's tiny 6 square mile radius.
"Is there a Jewish way to fill a pot hole? Is there a Muslim way to plow the streets," Gussen asks.
"The answer is, no."
"There are people of all kinds here, and you should be able to get along with everybody," said Teaneck resident Aggie Siletski.
Teaneck resident Amber Sheikh says, "Small little people, small little communities are the ones who got into the world and change is slowly, right?"
This town of 39,000 is a leader in successful cultural diversity and change.
In the spring of 1964, Teaneck became the first American town with a white majority to desegregate its schools.
Today, 46 years later, it remains a model to emulate anywhere on Earth.
"Are there things that happen in Teaneck that could happen elsewhere? Yeah, I really think there are," Gussen says.
"It shows that kids can dream a little bigger - that they don't have to worry about all the stereotypes," Hameeduddin added.
"Anybody can do anything."
Teaneck, a Small Town Big Enough for Everyone
Jews and Muslims Live in Harmony in the Middle of New Jersey
CBS Evening News with Katie Couric -- August 11, 2010
VIDEO (2-1/2 min)
Jewish Residents, Muslim Mayor
= = 2 = =
Ten years later
a symbolic wall comes down
between Israel and Palestine
Israel has begun removing cement walls once thought needed to protect against fire between Beit Jalla, Palestine, and Gilo, an Israeli neighborhood of Jerusalem adjacent to the West Bank.
Israeli military spokesperson cited a new kind of security -- "good working relations."
At the same time, Israel has eased restrictions and is now allowing Israeli citizens to travel to select Palestinian cities like Bethlehem and Jericho, for the first time since the year 2000.
Abu Mohor is director of the Bethlehem Arab Society for Rehabilitation. situated on a hill overlooking the former battlefield -- the Gilo-Beit Jalla valley across which fire was exchanged.
I believe that those days will never come back in terms of shooting. . ."
People put walls up.
People can take walls down.
Jerusalem Neighborhood Security Walls Come Down
The Media Line -- The MidEast News Source -- August 15, 2010
VIDEO (3 min)
= 3 = =
Acts of kindness
It's Always Better When We're Together
(no matter how diverse)
by Jack Johnson
MUSIC VIDEO (5 min)
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These and hundreds of other success stories are preserved at http://traubman.igc.org/messages.htm