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In his Jan. 17 article, “Will the Tiger find a way out of the Woods?,” columnist Tom Plate finds commentator Brit Hume’s statement on American television that Christianity might offer a public figure (such as golfer Tiger Woods) a greater opportunity for repentance to be not only virtually unconstitutional but also virtually equivalent to what China’s regime is doing to Tibetan Buddhists. An educated American who often writes on Asia, Plate finds Hume’s proselytizing to be “very dangerous” and “utterly depressing.”

As a Christian who finds Fox TV’s pandering to prejudice repellent, I remain grateful that the U.S. Constitution actually protects proselytizing, and that U.S. courts are not likely to reverse that tomorrow. I do not find Plate’s opinions to be dangerous, as no one in Tibet or in prison for their beliefs in China is going to be fooled for a second! But I do find it depressing that readers who do not know U.S. law — or the suffering of China’s ethnic and religious dissenters — may think Plate’s columns to be “informed.”

william reis

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