At a time when rampant bigotry, state-sponsored xenophobia, and politically-inspired religious discrimination is rampant, Qasim Rashid – author of Extremist and The Wrong Kind of Muslim – provides a roadmap for interfaith cooperation, racial understanding, and community peace building in his new book, Talk to Me.
In a very personal and intimate way, Rashid invites the reader to engage in serious, meaningful conversations to confront some critical and significant issues. However, Rashid reminds the reader that communication is not enough to solve issues ranging from Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia to extremism, education, and law.
As he puts it early on, “Communication without meaning and morality is like ocean water—you may have an infinite supply, but it can be the death of you.”
Through anecdote and lessons learned, Rashid poignantly highlights the reality of dialogue: the necessity of a purpose and goal; dialogue for the sake of dialogue is pointless.
He also reminds the reader that these substantial conversations require an examination of conscience. No effective, substantial, or meaningful conversation can have an impact or positive result without questioning our own assumptions, beliefs, and concepts. Once we’ve come to terms with who we are and what we believe, we can engage in a meaningful dialogue that is open, intimate, honest, and productive.