Dear Guy from Finland Who For a Few Hours on Sunday Hacked Crosswalk.com: (Oh, if you don't know what happened: On the morning of Sunday, Dec. 30, people who visited Crosswalk.com found, in place of the site, a single, crudely designed static page featuring cheesy-looking burning crosses and a message from the hacker directed to "Christian sheep," talking about how Christianity is a lame pack of lies believed by idiots, and so on. The message was maybe 50 words long. [It was also about impossible to read, since, as the hacker/author readily admitted, English is not his first language. He's from the great country of Finland. The site was back to normal--un hacked by Crosswalk's crack Techno Team in about two hours.)]

Dear Guy from Finland Who For a Few Hours on Sunday Cracked Crosswalk.com:

Hi, there. I'm one of the writers for Crosswalk.com. Is it cold where you live? It looks like it is, since the picture you put of yourself on your Crosswalk-hack page showed you wearing a thick cap and a sweatshirt. Of course (as you told us), you're from Finland, so you're definitely used to cold, even if you're not living in Finland anymore. Which you may be. But I have no idea. Either way, Finland definitely seems like one of the most fascinating places in the world.

Anyway, apparently you possess some serious computer skills. Way to go! I personally can barely tell a computer from a microwave oven, so I admire anyone who ... doesn't try to warm up their bagle on their computer. But would you mind, please, not using your awesome computer skills to destroy other people's websites? I know you think Christianity and Christians are stupid, and we may be. But look! Even I myself have written a fair number of pretty pro-atheist postings, such as, "Atheists! Incoming Olive Branch!" And Crosswalk featured that posting, and several others of mine like it. That's nice of them, right? That's really tolerant of them, I thought. They're good like that. They're open to honest, thoughtful conversation.

I don't know the people who run Crosswalk, but I know their boss, the director of the site. He's an exceptionally good man. Funny as all get out. ("As all get out," by the way, is an American idiom meaning "to the max." I have no idea where it came from. I don't know where "to the max" came from, either. As I believe you know, English is so complicated even people who speak it have no idea what's going on with it.)

Anyway, Mr. Hacker Man, please believe that not all Christians are the shallow, angry, intrusive, judgemental, sanctimonious, homophobic misogynists that I know it can seem, from the outside, like we all are.

We're not. I promise. I don't actually know anyone like that, though I've no doubt they exist. But generally, if you would, please, try to bear in mind that all the good, sane, normal, thoughtful, decent, tolerant, kind Christians are in church. It's (usually) the crazy ones who make the news, or scream at you on street corners.

The rest of us are just out here, trying to be the most honorable, loving people we can be. Promise.

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