Stop Scientology becoming a religion

Via Digg onward to the online petition to stop the ‘Church’ of Scientology becoming an officially recognised religion in the UK. For the following reasons:

– There is nothing to stop you believing in Scientology, Lord Xenu and anything else you want. We’re talking about stopping Scientology from achieving tax-exempt status merely by claiming it is a ‘religion’.

– Ultimately, I don’t agree with any state-approved ‘special treatment’ to religious bodies, who should pay tax just like anyone else. Ultimately, there is much that is both silly and disturbing in mainstream religions, and I’m hardly shy of saying it. However, this is real life here. Scientology does not have a mass following, and can be stopped. Furthermore, I think most people would want to stop it from wriggling out of paying tax.

– Scientology is different to other beliefs, as expressed well by prisoner24601 on Digg:

“Even the most hardcore atheist shouldn’t lump all religions into one “they are all equally worthless” category and just move on. The major religions of the world will “put their cards on the table” and provide an end-to-end explanation of their view of reality FOR FREE and WITHOUT any expectation of your ability to give anything back to them. Whether you believe Christianity or Islam or Buddhism to be true or not, you cannot fail to recognize that they are open about their agenda. Scientology, on the other hand, will (quite literally) sue you if you reveal the so-called “sacred texts” of their belief! How anyone cannot recognize there is a fundamental difference between sincere religions and the scam that is Scientology is truly inexplicable.”

– Scientology deserves it. The Church of England does not go around bullying Christians into cutting off all ties with their unconverted families and friends, or label enemies as “fair game”. Scientology has an nasty history which is very well documented online. You can also make a TV programme (such as Panorama) criticising Christianity without getting stalked by creepy men in dark glasses, unlike Scientology. As far as I know. Perhaps Rowan Williams has a series of cunning disguises.

– There’s always a chance I could draw a little bit of wrath.

– Tom Cruise supports it. Nuff said?

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