Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Brit Hume's comments about Tiger Woods and Christian redemption

Inspired by a Webutante post.

Everything in moderation.

Why the excitement over moderate proselytizing which occurred perfectly in context?

What opinion was Brit Hume supposed to share re Tiger Woods? Do we care, for instance, about Hume's amateur speculation re Tiger's ability to reclaim his advertising power? I don't, and I appreciate Hume sparing me his opinion. Bravo, Brit.

What else is there to say about Tiger Woods? Not much. Tiger's golf game is interesting, yet we don't care about any Fox panelist's opinion of Tiger's golf game. The sex gossip and the marriage gossip are car-wreck interesting, yet ungraceful. And there's nothing else which is currently interesting about Tiger Woods, except: there is the universally shared experience of dealing with the aftermath of our actions. THAT is interesting, and Hume perceptively identified that one interesting thing. This was professional news judgment at work.

Once Hume identified that one interesting thing, Hume's job was to give his opinion - HIS opinion, not a Buddhist' opinion - and Hume did give his opinion. Hume's comments were perceptive and professional. The comments constituted proselytizing, yet the comments were both in context and undertaken in moderation. Where is the problem? I see no problem on Brit Hume's part. It's appropriate for Christians to conversationally share their beliefs, provided Christians do so both in context and in moderation. It's appropriate for Christians to do this on a television opinion panel.

Hume could have merely said: The interesting question is how Tiger will deal with the aftermath of his actions. However, it was equally appropriate, on the television opinion panel, for Hume to briefly mention his personal beliefs about the healing power of Christianity. When speaking on an opinion panel, why ought Brit Hume hold back his personal opinion? Mr. Hume said nothing offensive. I know I have heard, in various opinion forums, atheists mention their beliefs, and Buddhists mention their beliefs. I don't remember being offended by brief, conversational, in-context, authentic sharing of beliefs.

Why do some non-Christians snipe so viciously at Christianity? Several possibilities:

First, since I am Christian, I honestly believe the devil is deceiving non-Christians.

Second, the dominant religion of the U.S. will naturally be the target of some sniping.

Third, some non Christians might be frustrated at their and at history's inability to discredit Christian faith in a way which motivates large numbers of Christians - or at least a number of their Christian friends - to abandon the religion.

Fourth: some non Christian snipers are secretly insecure about their beliefs, and are secretly worried about spending eternity in agonizing Hell.

Proselytization break! Nicole Nordeman's techno "You Gotta Serve Somebody"

Tied into insecurity about beliefs: some non Christians feel unvirtuous, blame Christians for making them feel unvirtuous, and react vehemently. A similar dynamic: the way many women looked at Sarah Palin having Trig, felt unvirtuous, blamed Sarah Palin, and reacted vehemently.

Note: Christians consistently act in unvirtuous fashion. With or without the existence of Christians: persons who are currently non Christians would still feel unvirtuous. Imo, some decent number of non-Christians misguidedly blame Christians for the non-Christians' own feelings of guilt and shame.

Fifth: some of the Hume sniping is politically motivated. It's a chance to bash Christians, and, by extension, to bash conservatives, Republicans, and Fox News. Political bashers do not care what Hume actually said: they only care what they can make it sound like he said. Hume deserves some defense, from us, against false or misguided accusation. Which is one reason I'm glad to see Webutante's blogpost. Hume doesn't deserve to be isolated from his natural supporters and then taken down by drooling predators.

Sixth: there are certainly other reasons which I can't think of now. For instance: non-Christians, understandably, do not suffer fools gladly. Nor should they. Whether or not you consider all Christians to be fools, there are undoubtedly plenty of Christian fools. I've been one myself, and will be again. We are imperfect; foolishness is inevitable.

However many reasons there might be: there exists, many times, extra heat behind sniping against Christianity.

Sinnerman, performed by Nina Simone:

Oh Sinnerman, where he gonna run to?
Sinnerman, where he gonna run to?
Where he gonna run to, all on that day?


Well I run to the river, it was boilin'
I run to the sea, it was boilin'
I run to the sea, it was boilin'
All on that day

So I ran to the Lord
I said, Lord hide me,
please hide me, please help me
All on that day

He said,
where were you
when you oughta been prayin'?

Creation of Light, by Gustove Dore


1 comment:

Webutante said...

Greg, thank you for writing on this important subject and commenting on Webutante.

I too honestly believe Satan deceives non-believers. It is his job to operate in half-truths and downright untruths. His job is to twist truth and perceptions. Often this is subtle and seemingly insignificant but nevetheless profound.

Much else I agree with, but this for now.