Scientology in Canada

Toronto Protest: July 14 1997

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Date: Mon, 14 Jul 1997 07:14:22 -0400
From: (Gregg Hagglund)
Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Toronto Picket Report: July 12th. (Full Version)

Toronto Org Picket #3

Sat. July 12, 1997.

3:30 to 5:30 pm

Special Picket Theme: Free Odhran Fortune!


Subsequent to our last picket, (June 7) I and others left hints on ARS of impending pickets.

On the date of the first 'ghost picket', Co$ Toronto loaned their chapel out to a wedding at our usual picketing time. But we weren't there. Rev. Buttnor and company did not officiate at the wedding but did spend considerable time and resources to photographing passersby and the idle curious, including Artemis.

The second 'ghost picket' on Free Odhran Fortune day the Co$ sent out their kids in 90 degree heat (27 C) to do an 'Anti-drug' display. Artemis took some pictures of this and I will be webbing them. (Nice kids, BTW.)

Artemis enturbulated Al Buttnor one weekday by taking pictures of the Org. Al approached Artemis and whined, "I consider this harassment".

The local constabulary unofficially regards this kind of complaint as "childishness".

Reliable *sources* have contacted me, independently, to reveal that the local Courts refused to consider a legal weasel feeler on a TRO against pickets, as "without merit". This after the TROs given in Eire and the UK against the Fortunes.

July 12th and July 19th were stated by me on ARS as impossibilities due to lack of police resources to provide a cover for the pickets. This was a false trail, but not totally untrue. No police cover was available on July 12th, until after the Orangeman Parade. Therefore, we filed Notice for a 3 to 6 pm slot (grin).

On Sat as I prepared to leave for the pre-picket rallying point, I discovered that my van was again adorned with a R2-45 warning and additionally both of my rear tires were flat.

Fortunately the tires were not punctured and I was able to re-inflate them.


The third picket was another 'surprise' hit and ran from 3:30 to 5:30. We kept it down to 2 hrs because of the heat, although at that time of the day, we were able to enjoy lots of shade while picketing the local shady Org.

Local Co$ members got the hint we were going to run another one on them at 3pm when three bicycle cops showed up and planted themselves in front of the org up against the windows. They then began to scout about the neighborhood and spotted us at the our pre-picket meeting place.

We mounted this picket with two experienced picketers, Artemis and I and three new faces. Our three newbies were dutifully photographed by the Sea Ogre so they are now official SPs, but not from the Net. Our resources are now reaching into the non-ars anti-CoS management community.

All our signs, except for the Lisa M sign, had six inch high headers added. These were bright green and said: "Free Odhran Fortune!" in Celtic Bold script. Very visible above the bright yellow signage.

The 2-hour picket was fairly uneventful, but highly successful in three areas.

1. Information Dissemination. We distributed a fair number of three different flyers:

RXSpecial (Xenu): 250
Dyin' Ethics: 190 (all that were available!)
Odhran Fortune: 100

Total of 540 flyers and pamphlets handed out. Due to the obvious duplications, this represents about 300 more locals and passersby that have been educated on Co$ management abuses and related issues.

Many people refused to take the RXSpecial, but always said something to the effect: 'I already got it, thanks. Keep up the good work and give it to someone who hasn't seen it yet.'

Some students said they had made copies after the last picket and given them to their friends or posted them on campuses.

Many people asked details on the Fortune situation and expressed disbelief and then outrage.

2. Enturbulation.

Buttnor was vastly put out at my tone forties about the RXspecial, "Find out what they DON'T want you to know", etc.

He tried to taperecord me barking to the passersby and occasionally holding court with small crowds interested in hearing details. He wanted to do this while my back was turned, but a passerby alerted me. Additionally, one of our newbies brought a videocamera and caught Big Al in the act. It's a riot. There is Al, holding his minicorder out and standing behind me out of sight. He looks left and right with that ferret look of a 3 year old, y'know: "gee I hope no one sees me, especially mom"...then he spots the videocamera and goes all embarrassed and put out. He actually pouts!

Other videocamera highlights include yours truly in full crowd greeting mode; ear to ear and behind the hand 'secret whispers' between Buttnor and the SeaOrger and the few minutes of counter-picket body routing.

3. Being at Cause over the Org.

Except for a few photos and the taperecording and maybe 10 minutes total body routing, the Org mounted no defense. They just rolled over and played dead.

A total of three people went in the org for the personality test. All came out and took flyers. Two of them talked to me (they were together). Both of these young men (19-24) thought the Co$ was FOS and read the RXspecial and the DEP with interest.

Big Al whined to police about 'bigotry' at one point, deliberately loud enough for me to hear. He didn't like my loud retort that I am prejudiced against deceptive business practices and just why doesn't he tell people, up front, that Hubbard taught there is no God or Christ? He literally ran and hid in the Org for a while.

He stayed in the back, glaring through the side windows or occasionally waddling up to the front for the next hour. He finally re-emerged about 5 pm and did do some street talking, issuing the same lies about 'religious persecution' and 'rag-tag radicals' etc. I saw a couple of people laugh at him. I could tell the laughter was at his expense because of his scowl.

Interesting Incidents:

We did get visited by a couple of what I call Irish Bullyboys. Big guys with the biker build and sporting "I'm proud to be Irish" T-shirts. They took copies of the Odhran Flyer and then briefly stood in front of the Org doorway and read the flyers aloud to each other, then they briefly discussed the flyers with each other. The whole time they do this they are talking just loud enough and forcefully enough to be heard inside the Org. Someone briefly closed the Org door at this point and the BIG IRISH DUDES left.

One lady literally cried on my shoulder about how, years ago, her husband and blown their savings on Co$ courses, & briefly separated from her because she was anti-CoS. He left the Co$ after doing OT3 and returned to her and his kids a broken man. He had been down in the States and returned as she said tearfully, "Broken in mind, spirit and body." He died of liver failure while on the transplant waiting list a while ago.

She cried because she said that when he came back he was so ashamed and guilty because when he finally found out about Xenu etc. he knew he had been deceived about everything and he just walked away from the Co$. He had called her and asked her to wire him busfare back, which she did. She cried because, as she said, "No one told him about Xenu up front and no protester stood out front and dared to expose the Co$ secrets."

I told her no one had had the opportunity to spread this kind of info before. She said she knew that and she was glad to get him back still alive. They had had time for him to reacquaint himself with his kids and settle everything between themselves. She had the chance to tell him she forgave him, but he never really forgave himself. She said once his liver problems were diagnosed he spent a week cursing the CoS, Hubbard, and his own foolishness - and then never mentioned them again.

She and her kids are in family counselling and still dealing with this.

She gave me a big hug and went on her way. Very sad indeed.

Acks: 6-8 car honks
3 taxis (one wanted more RXs to entertain his fares)
Usual dozens of passer by "well done"s
Two double-decker tourist bus Acks
Two Baby Acks (rattles, beeps and giggles)


Our picketing resources continue to grow and have spilled off the Net into the general community. Soon there will be enough momentum and available participants that my absence will not end the local picketing. This will make my family feel a lot happier, as I will be less of a target, in their opinion.

A special Canadian Irish hello and best wishes to the Fortunes. Your plight is known here too and sympathies and well wishes were expressed. Save a seat for Odhran at your hearth, he will return. Keep the pressure on and the Gardai alert!

All of the new faces expressed the intention of not only returning but spreading the word and encouraging others to join in. They all took copies of the Picket Advisory to show others that we were organised and serious.

I'll be webbing this later this week and will post the new URLs when ready. I do have more photos too.

We will be back at the Borgs door on ....... any moment we damn well feel like!

Be seeing you,

Gregg SP5

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Martin Hunt / / August 22 1997