I would like to counter the current vilification of Robert Kirby by relating my recent interaction with him.

In my home in Pahoa, Hawaii, I kept the books of my four favorite authors: Pat Corrigan, Bart Ehrman, Robert Kirby and P.G. Wodehouse. Sadly, in May, Madame Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of fire, claimed my house and its contents.

I particularly treasured a signed copy of "Wake Me for the Resurrection." I emailed Mr. Kirby, telling him of my loss and asking if he would inscribe his book if I purchased a new copy on Amazon. He instead brought me five of his books, all inscribed, to help ease my loss.

This was the act of a kind and generous person.

I may not always agree with his opinions, but I think the point of having newspaper columnists is to provoke discussion, even dissension. Hanging a threat of punishment for expressing one's thoughts over columnists' heads will soon turn a free press into pablum.

Peggy Fujimura, West Jordan