Bringing up Scientology does NOT exploit Jett Travolta’s death

4 01 2009

With the death of John Travolta’s and Kelly Preston’s teenage son Jett, the inevitable reference to their “religion” will come up. Some critics of Scientology have immediately tied his tragic death to his parent’s belief in the rantings of a lunatic, while others wish to hold off on all criticism to let his parents grieve. Some mainstream media commenters even call our response ghoulish. On the Operation Clambake Message Boards, a poster by the name of J. Swift requested a “Global Day of Peace”, a small ceasefire of all criticism of the “Church” of Scientology, on January 9th, 2009, to give condolences to the Travolta family. Here are my two cents.

Any day spent not exposing the nature of the cult is a day wasted. Before Jett Travolta’s death, there had been reports on celebrity news websites about his condition. Rumors have circulated for years that Jett Travolta was autistic, but his parents have never acknowledged that. Instead, they have maintained that their son suffered from Kawasaki’s Syndrome, which was caused by environmental toxins such as carpet cleaners. A report by the blog Hollywood Interrupted has some confirmation about Jett Travolta’s autism:

On Friday, April 7th, Hollywood, Interrupted was treated to the Los Angeles premiere of “Normal People Scare Me” – a feature-length documentary about autism, co-directed by the high functioning autistic teenager Taylor Cross and his mother, Keri Bowers. The event was sponsored by an organization called Cure Autism Now (CAN) and the new magazine, The Autism Perspective (TAP).

This enlightening film was produced by b-movie actor/director/producer and former special education teacher, Joey Travolta. Joey’s brother and sister-in-law, “Battlefield Earth” co-stars John Travolta and his wife Kelly Preston, were not present. Too bad…

…Had John and Kelly been at the screening, they might have a better understanding of the disorder reportedly affecting their 14 year-old son, Jett. Sadly, the Scientology couple cannot even publicly admit that their son is afflicted with a neurological disorder, lest – according to the incontrovertible doctrine of Scientology founder L Ron Hubbard – he be labeled a “degraded being” that brought his affliction onto himself. Instead, the Travoltas have long blamed their son’s disability on Kawasaki Syndrome-related “environmental toxins,” specifically carpet cleaning chemicals.

Read it all to decide for yourself. But if John Travolta’s brother and Cure Autism Now lend credence to the claim of Jett’s autism, then something is wrong here. Were Travolta and his wife in denial about Jett? A Florida restaurant owner named Tim Kelly also makes some serious claims against John Travolta and Kelly Preston regarding Jett:

Joking aside, the Kennys are “disgusted by” Travolta. They claim that Travolta has turned down invitations to participate in autism fundraisers, and most recently refused to participate in a local celebrity golf tournament if a connection to autism advocacy was promoted. The organizers of the charity tournament scheduled at the Golden Hills Country Club in November are alleged to have changed the billing from an autism event to the more generic “fundraiser for disabled children” to accommodate the star. Calls to event organizer, the Family Resources Coalition, were not returned by post time.

The Kennys also claim that Kelly and John “let Jett sit in front of video games all day eating junk food, while they eat the best organic food money can buy. They exclude Jett from all social events because they are embarrassed.”

“Once,” reports Kenny, “when Kelly took him to the movies, Jett started to have a meltdown and Kelly pointed at the nanny and ordered, ‘Take care of it.'”

“Jett does not speak at all,” confirms Kenny. “He has not even been taught how to communicate. We struggle every week to pay for our daughter’s therapy. How dare he [Travolta] ruin his own son’s chances of recovering! We want to get the word out on this.”

No one will ever know if Tim Kelly’s claims are true. Earlier last year Kelly passed away, and Jett is no longer with us either. Only Jett knows how his parents treated him while he was alive. But that doesn’t mean questions shouldn’t be asked. The “Church” of Scientology has gotten away scot free for their responsibility in the deaths of Lisa McPherson and Elli Perkins, two people who would still be here if not for the sheer quackery of L. Ron Hubbard’s teachings.

Perhaps some restraint should be maintained until an autopsy report comes out. But a Global Day of Peace is useless, even foolish. Think of how Scientologists would behave if a teenager committed a massacre with a gun. Scientologists like Jett Travolta’s mother Kelly Preston (who is a big shill for the “Church”‘s Citizen’s Commission on Human Rights) would make all sorts of baseless claims that psychiatry messed up that kid. If they can do that, why can’t we? At least we will have facts instead of baseless accusations.

If you wish to honor the Global Day of Peace, go ahead and do so. But for me personally, peace will only come when the “Church” of Scientology is finally reduced to pussy cat size and people don’t get sucked into it’s warp.

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Scientology drug rehab facility to be shut down

30 12 2008

Cross-posted at Counterknowledge.com

A drug rehabilitation facility run by the “Church” of Scientology front group Narconon in Alberquerque, New Mexico, had its lease agreement terminated for violating its terms. Second Chance was only intended to house non-violent criminals from the local county jail. However, the facility housed violent criminals as well – and covered it up. According to police officer Peter Dinelli, 11 inmates of the total population of 46 had committed crimes such as “aggravated battery, robbery, battery, assault on a household member, armed robbery, kidnapping”. Second Chance has 30 days to somehow salvage their lease, or it will be kicked out of its current premises.

Mayor Martin Chavez insists that this eviction notice comes only because of the violation of the terms of the lease, not because of its affiliation with the “Church” of Scientology. Perhaps he and other public officials in Alberquerque, and the state of New Mexico, need more education on the pseudoscience of the “Church” of Scientology’s so-called drug rehabilitation treatment. I touched upon Narconon briefly in a recent article about Scientology front groups. The treatment used in Narconon facilities is called the Purification (or Purif for short) Rundown, which is given to Scientologists who want to get rid of any traces of drugs supposedly still in their system. However, in this internal memo from L. Ron Hubbard in 1982, the Purif Rundown is also intended to be used to “bridge masses of people into Scientology”. Like many patients at Narconon facilities, the inmates at Second Chance are treated to high doses of niacin and long hours in a sauna. Long hours in a sauna can cause dehydration, and high doses of niacin can cause liver damage.

The quackery of this drug detoxification “treatment” is bad enough. What makes it worse is the “Church”’s useful idiots in public office who unwittingly push for Narconon facilities to be built in their communities.

Second Chance was started by two prominent Scientologists named Joy Westrum and Rick Pendery in Tijuana, Mexico. After bringing a New Mexico state legislator named Anna Crook to see the Tijuana facility, they got the support needed to bring Second Chance to Alberquerque. According to this suspiciously positive article about the so-called success rate of Second Chance (authored by Kris Nickerson), recidivism has been reduced by 90 percent thanks to the “wisdom” of L. Ron Hubbard.

As is the case with all Scientology front groups, the only thing accomplished is the recruitment of more fresh blood into Scientology’s ranks. Even military recruiters are more ethical than this. Kim Gawlick, a former patient at a Narconon facility in Vista Bay, California, says Narconon staff members pushed her to join the “Church” of Scientology (see page 5). As a result, she left after one month, fearing for her life. This point is sadly lost in Mayor Chavez’s decision to evict Second Chance: Second Chance has done more than just house violent criminals. It has taken advantage of people at their most vulnerable and given them a new drug, worse than any other: Scientology.





Dressing Up Scientology’s Front Groups, or The Lipstick on The Pig

11 07 2008

Glosslip: Dressing Up Scientology’s Front Groups, or The Lipstick on The Pig

July 9th, 2008

The greatest trick the devil pulled off was convincing the world he didn’t exist. If the devil doesn’t exist, then no one will focus attention on him and his ugliness. And that seems to be par for the course for many cults and criminal organizations. The best PR for rotten organizations like the Church of Scientology is the set up of benevolent groups that offer services to help mankind. It’s the best way to sneak in and infiltrate all levels of society, and people should be alerted to this kind of subversive activity.

Appealing to the youth

The above video is a Public Service Announcement from the Youth For Human Rights International. Youth For Human Rights certainly seems like a good group at first glance. In an age where young people are more apathetic than ever, it’s encouraging to see youth stand up for human rights. The above PSA has a catchy beat and a very positive message, that’s a given. Why then am I including this video as an example of the devil’s age-old trick? Because this human rights group is a front group for the Church of Scientology. Its founder, Mary Shuttleworth, is a Scientologist and the organization is mostly staffed by Scientologists. Many people catch on to the fact that YHRI is a front group, but they don’t find out until it’s too late.

Many non-Scientologist youth join YHRI not knowing it is a front group for Scientology. Their good intentions to make the world a better place are misused by people who intend to push the “technology” of a raving lunatic into all levels of society. In fact, YHRI is set up to draw many young people into Scientology, which is what most Scientology front groups are designed to do.

Why the furor over Will Smith’s new private school?

Many people must be wondering why there is a lot of controversy over the New Village Academy, a school set up by actor Will Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett. The New Village Academy intends to employ a lot of educational approaches in this new type of school. But one stands out the most: the employment of Scientology Study Technology. That is the one thing that is controversial about Will Smith’s new school. Since this revelation came out in the media, Jacqueline Olivier, the principal of New Village Academy, and Will Smith have strongly insisted the new school is not a Scientology school. But why is Study Tech controversial?

Study tech is founded on 3 principles: Using visual images to teach concepts, breaking down complex concepts, and using the dictionaries to find the meanings for unfamiliar words. Seems reasonable enough, given that’s how children are taught in the first few grades of elementary school. But Study Tech is unavoidably tainted with Scientology related teachings, therefore raising questions about the separation of church and state. There have been numerous attempts to slip Study Tech into public schools as well, which is much worse than Will Smith’s private school employing Study Tech . Study Tech in itself is just a concept, not a front group. The relevant front group that pushes it in public schools is Applied Scholastics, which is a misnomer.

CCHR-An Industry of Fear and Paranoia

Another misnomer for a front group name is the Citizen’s Commission on Human Rights. The CCHR was established in 1969 by the Church of Scientology and non-Scientologist psychiatry critic Thomas Szasz, and since then it has been spreading lies and misinformation about psychiatry and psychology. Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote of psychiatrists:

“Crimes of extortion, mayhem and murder are done daily by these men in the name of ‘practice’ and ‘treatment’. There is not one institutional psychiatrist alive who, by ordinary criminal law, could not be arraigned and convicted of extortion, mayhem and murder. Our files are full of evidence on them.”

LINK

The CCHR formed a website called PsychCrime, which tracks down crimes committed by individual mental health professionals. Granted, crimes are committed by individual psychiatrists, psychologists, and mental health professionals, but the CCHR takes their crimes and makes a mountain out of a mole hill. In 2005, the CCHR debuted its notorious Psychiatry-An Industry of Death museum exhibit, which blames psychiatry for everything from Hitler and the Holocaust to Kurt Cobain’s suicide.

The CCHR is one of the worst Scientology front groups because it uses lies and half-truths to instill paranoia not only into Scientologists, but also the general public. It is this paranoia that led to the death of Elli Perkins by her schizophrenic son Jeremy. It is also this paranoia that eventually killed Lisa McPherson, who died in the care of Scientologists who did not want her in a psychiatric ward . And the paranoia the CCHR propagates originates from a man who was probably mentally ill himself.

More focus needed

There are lots of other front groups that are not mentioned here but a little search on Google will bring up a complete listing of Scientology front groups. So far the monthly Anonymous protests have dealt with the Church of Scientology’s tax-exempt status, the disconnection policy, the fair game policy, and the Church of Scientology’s elite Sea Organization. The upcoming July 12th deals with the subversive activities of OSA. Scientology’s front groups deserve lots of focus because they are the “secular” fronts of Scientology, meaning their ties with Scientology are not obvious. It is like Intelligent Design used as a deceptive name from Creationism. Each of Scientology’s front groups claims the groups have nothing to do with Scientology, and on paper, each Scientology front group is an independent entity. But more public scrutiny is needed because with these front groups, L. Ron Hubbard’s insane “tech” is fed to the public.

If the Church of Scientology’s influence is to be reduced to pussycat size, then the focus of a future protest should be its front groups.

Extra: Watch this point by point refutation of the CCHR propaganda film “Psychiatry: An Industry of Death”: