The Daily News interviewed Pakistani immigrants in my Brooklyn neighborhood for a story in today’s paper.
It’s not surprising that Pakistanis in the US would dislike Musharraf but it’s pretty rare that Little Pakistan is ever mentioned in the news. So I’ll indulge myself and take a moment to talk about what I think is one of the terrific perks of living where I live.
Little Pakistan is a working-class and family oriented immigrant neighborhood that established itself on a rather unaesthetic, mostly commercial length of Coney Island Avenue. It spills over into the neighborhoods on either side; Kensington on the west is mostly Russian, Jewish and Carribean and Ditmas Park on the east is gentrifying and in it’s current state is very diverse – a less common neighborhgood trait in Brooklyn than most people probably know. The entrance to my apartment building is one block off CIA on the Ditmas Park side.
The Pakistanis are friendly neighbors and welcoming business owners. I’m always recognized in their shops and restaurants and never made to feel like an outsider in the little niche they’ve carved out for themselves. I will admit that regularly seeing women in full burkahs took a little getting used to, but now I barely notice them. Little or no crime emanates from their community and on the whole their presence only benefits the greater area that I consider my neighborhood.