Reading the different points of view on the arrest of Harvard professor Gates reminds me of this anecdote:

Saadi of Shiraz, in his Bostan, stated an important truth when he told this miniature tale :

A man met another, who was handsome, intelligent and elegant. He asked him who he was. The other said : 'I am the Devil.'

'But you cannot be,' said the first man, 'for the devil is evil and ugly.'

'My friend,' said Satan, 'you have been listening to my detractors.'

Source of anecdote: Idries Shah. Reflections. London: Octogon Press, 1968.