There are times, though, when courtesy is craven. If something is bad it's bad even if its the time-honoured custom of a cultural minority. How about female genital mutilation? Honour killings? The KKK are also a minority. Should I respect their regalia? Oh, look a pointy hood- how quaint!
Nice story about the British in India. The Governor General (or whoever) outlawed the practice of suttee- the burning of widows on their husbands' funeral pyres. A delegation of elders went to protest, "But it's our time hallowed cultural tradition". "Fine," said the GG, "Carry on, but I've got to inform you that we British have a time honoured cultural tradition of hanging men who burn women."
Not everyone who claims to be a spokesman for ancestral tradition or a community leader has a legitimate mandate. Some are chancers, some are oppressors. Why should I accept the authority of a beardy Imam any more than that of a kiddie-fiddling Christian priest?
Holy books are a ball and chain. We're not doing anyone a favour in the long run by bowing and scraping to prophets and popes and sons of god.
We need to guard against sentimentalizing the other. Human nature is a constant. The noble savage and the magic negro (and the gay best friend and the wise old lama) are patronising and insulting stereotypes.
No-one should be discriminated against or given a free pass just because they dress funny.