The most unethical cult on earth is in the spotlights again — but not with the type of publicity it prefers.
The tragic death of John Travolta’s son may or may not have been related to Scientology‘s quackery — but given that cult’s insane approach to anything health-related, the Travolta’s adherence to this alleged ‘religion’ can not have helped.
Elizabeth Snead at the LA Times provides a good overview of the controversy:
Avid critics of John Travolta’s church, the Church of Scientology, are now linking to a website that eerily predicted his son Jett’s death in 2007.
The critics claim that Jett was autistic and was not given the proper diagnosis and/or treatments because Scientology disapproves of psychiatric and drug treatment of autism, also rejecting psychiatry as a pseudo-science.
Do follow each of the links in that item to additional information. You’ll see why Damian Thompson at the Telegraph (UK), concludes:
I sense that a major story is in the process of breaking. I could be wrong, and maybe I’m being exploitative. But if certain questions need answering, then – with all respect to the bereaved parents – they must be asked.
Owen Thomas at Gawker is more direct:
The tragic death of John Travolta’s teenage son Jett could spell the end of Scientology, sci-fi author L. Ron Hubbard’s loopy, medicine-hating cult from the 1950s.
Jett’s parents, Travolta and Kelly Preston, are both “clear” — an exalted, expensively attained status in Scientology. Critics of Scientology have long known that the pseudo-religion, based on Hubbard’s Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health, discourages adherents from seeking medical help for problems they deem “psychosomatic.” That old line about it being all in your head forms the basis of Scientology’s weird belief system; most problems, even if they manifest themselves physically, are spiritual in nature, stemming from the patient’s “reactive mind.” Even aspirin is deemed a mood-altering drug to be avoided — too bad if you take it to prevent blood clots.
Hence the controversy over Jett Travolta’s apparent death from a head injury, likely incurred after he suffered a seizure in the Bahamas condo where the Travolta family and their two nannies were staying.
Scientology is evil; its techniques are evil; its practice is a serious threat to the community, medically, morally, and socially; and its adherents are sadly deluded and often mentally ill… (Scientology is) the world’s largest organization of unqualified persons engaged in the practice of dangerous techniques which masquerade as mental therapy.
– Source: Justice Anderson, Supreme Court of Victoria, Australia, quoted at What judges have to say about Scientology
Wondering how someone gets sucked into this cult? Read The Complex: An Insider Exposes the Covert World of the Church of Scientology