The Wrap is reporting that Anderson Cooper will begin a four-day CNN special series Monday titled Scientology: A History of Violence.
This is becoming a drumbeat now, after the St. Pete Times‘s excellent series last year revealed that Scientology’s diminutive leader, David Miscavige, allegedly gets slappy with his employees.
Now, unfortunately, the bigs are starting to weigh in — New York Times, recently, and now Anderson Cooper — with what is increasingly a misguided approach to Scientology.
Yes, as Cooper will no doubt “expose,” some people sign billion-dollar -year contracts in Scientology and then work for almost no pay and are generally treated like animals.
We’re all supposed to get really worked up about this. (To what end? Are these people seriously expecting some kind of FBI raid of Scientology spiritual HQ in Clearwater, Florida, in order to liberate Sea Org members because they’re not making minimum wage?)
In the meantime, here’s why this is all such a bad idea. As Cooper explains…
“I just want to point out that this series is not about the beliefs or activities of the Church of Scientology. It is not about the religion or the vast majority of Scientologists. This series simply has to do with what some former high ranking church officials say went on within the upper management of the church, and what happened to them when they left the church.”
OK, Anderson, you jackass, try to follow this. OF COURSE it’s about the beliefs of the “vast majority” of Scientologists. (“Vast majority”? More and more evidence suggests that there are about 20,000 active Scientologists, worldwide.) The CORE BELIEFS of this abomination of a “church” have people giving up hundreds of thousands of dollars and impoverishing themselves in every damn way — by not only forking over all their cash but also alienating family members and friends — while following a nonsensical rubric of “training” that promises them superhuman powers if they’ll just believe that a hack science fiction writer, L. Ron Hubbard, somehow unlocked the mysteries of the human brain. And then, only after they’ve invested a decade of their lives and hocked everything they own, do they find out that Hubbard, while hopped up on various stimulants, “discovered” that all of our problems are caused by disembodied space-alien souls clinging to our bodies.
The beliefs of these morons are crucial because it’s their beliefs that allow the perpetuation of what is essentially a criminal business enterprise, a fact that has been established over and over in courts around the world.
This somewhat amusing sideshow — that the church’s highest member allegedly gets rough with his underlings, and that Scientology is also ruthless with the tiny number of Sea Org members around the world — is hardly as important as the basics of the “religion” itself, and how Scientology has manipulated the U.S. government into subsidizing their mafia scheme with tax-exempt status.
But go ahead, Anderson. Show us how awful little DM is with his fists of fury, and whatever you do, don’t dare mention that your average, sweet Scientologist — the “vast majority” — is maybe having a little cynical fun with the country’s tax laws and religious freedoms.