Buddhism is inferior to Christianity when it comes to forgiveness of sins, according to Fox News pundit Brit Hume. Tiger Woods should turn his back on Buddhism and become a Christian to be forgiven for cheating on his wife, Hume told Fox News' Chris Wallace Sunday.
"The extent to which he can recover seems to me depends on his faith," said Hume. "He is said to be a Buddhist. I don't think that faith offers the kind of redemption and forgiveness offered by the Christian faith. My message to Tiger is, 'Tiger turn to the Christian faith and you can make a total recovery and be a great example to the world."
Woods is the most famous among several American celebrity Buddhists. Richard Gere, Herbie Hancock, Steven Seagal, Leonard Cohen, Tina Turner and Orlando Bloom were recently called the most famous Buddhists in the world. The list goes so far as to argue Tiger Woods is more famous than the Dalai Lama himself.
Hume's statements are particularly ironic given the recent sex scandals encountered by an assortment of Christian politicians.
Two noted journalists criticized Hume's remarks.
At his Daily Dish blog, The Atlantic's Andrew Sullivan wrote, "The pure sectarianism of this comment - its adoption of the once-secular stage of political journalism to insert a call for apostasy - is striking. It even seemed to catch Bill Kristol off-guard a little."
MSNBC anchor David Shuster left a number of Tweets at his Twitter account.
Agreed... it was inappropriate
I respect everybody's faith, different from mine or not. But don't use a sunday news show to preach your faith. Analyze the news.
In the interest of fairness, that sunday show should make time for a member of Bhuddism given Brit's criticism of that religion.
Think Progress also notes, "Hume’s colleagues on the Fox Business network decided to do a little digging into his claims. The Don Imus show crew reported that Hume doesn’t quite have his facts straight on Buddhism."
According to Imus, "Well, we checked this morning and unfortunately, or perhaps fortunately if you are a Buddhist, there is a path to recovery and redemption. Right? Well yes there is. The idea of redemption — nirvana under Buddhism — is achieving the state of being freed from greed, hate, and delusion."
Think Progress adds,
Imus’ co-host Charles McCord tried to defend Hume by arguing that he was merely stating that Buddhism didn’t offer “the kind of path to redemption”; rather, it’s a different path. Imus responded, “But wouldn’t one infer from what he said…is that there was no path to redemption?” “You could,” agreed McCord.
This video is from Fox's Fox News Sunday, broadcast Jan. 3, 2010.