Christmas Visit By A Scientologist

Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology
Subject: Christmas Visit By A Scientologist
Date: Sun, 28 Dec 1997 22:45:29 GMT

For background, please see:
International Pickets: December 6, 1997 - Atlanta
Editor's note: this report is now located at:

In conjuntion with this post, please see also:'s post, titled "To a Lost Friend:"
Editor's note: This post is now located at:

   A Scientologist came to see me on Christmas night.

   This was not an ordinary Scientologist; this was what remains of my
friend, the Scientologist.

   He brought my Christmas present with him.  I thanked him, and I
apologized for not having gotten his present yet (hadn't gotten anyone's
yet), and asked what he wanted.  He said "peace".  He said he wasn't
going to talk about that on Christmas, though, because it wouldn't be a
good thing to "ruin Christmas" with.

   When midnight hit, though, I quickly found out what he wanted...  He
knew that our mutual friend, wynot, had picketed the Church of
Scientology in Atlanta on December 6, in honor of Lisa McPherson, and he
was here to "handle" us.  By the time he left, at 3am, and knowing that I
had to work the following day, he was shouting at the top of his lungs,
and pounding his hands on my doorframes.  This was not the friend I knew;
the friend I had known was a calm, gentle person.

   After the shock wore off, it occurred to me that I had been "handled"
by the Church of Scientology in the same classic way I had read about so
many times.  The emotional appeal, the repetition of church "acceptable
truths", the staring, and the eventual anger, Tone 40 threats, and
behaviour leaning toward violence; they were all there that night.

   First he appealed to me on the basis of our long-standing friendship,
despite the disagreements we have had over his "religion".  I was his
"oldest and dearest friend", and that it hurt him to have looked out the
window during the solo picket, and seen wynot, "acting like a fool",
picketing - attacking his church.  If he hadn't looked out the window and
recognized him, he said, the church wouldn't have known ~who~ it was.
Some additional comments he made were:

 * Wynot was obviously scared, because after they sent someone out to
talk to him, and to take him the "truth about Lisa McPherson, he ran
away.  He had not expected to be alone, and that when he found out no one
else was coming to picket, he left, like a coward.  (I told him that I
didn't think he left because he was scared, I thought he left because he
had achieved his purpose.  What was that, to look like a complete fool?
I was asked.  I smiled.  I was thinking "it got a reaction, the Church of
Scientology / Hubbard Dianetics Center in Atlanta can't ignore us any

 * Everyone in the org was laughing at wynot.  (wynot said the women sent
outside to "handle" and photograph him at the picket were not laughing.)

 * The Lisa flyers wynot carried and gave to people had been created by
Lerma.  (In fact, they were Roland's flyers, slightly modified to put the
picture at the top, and I did mention to him that I thought they were
created by a man in England named Roland.  I wanted badly to add the part
about Roland being punched in the face while picketing, but I knew it
would only invite more ranting.  And in fact, wynot had only given out
ONE flyer at the picket, to the woman sent out to "handle" him.)

 * I was informed that most of the orgs did not get picketed that day,
and as I started listing the cities I could remember reports from, I was
informed that the picket in Clearwater had only attracted 3 or 4
picketers.  (I held my tongue about the Church of Scientology picket of
the Fire and Police Depts, and of the SP Times - I love that name!)  I
was also told how the Church of Scientology picket in Germany could only
manage to attract about 50 counterpicketers.

   It was hurting him, he said, making him physically ill, to be
connected to someone (me) who was connected to someone attacking his
church.  It kept him from doing his job well, since his job is
publicity.  What did he want me to do?  He wanted to bring me the "truth"
about Lisa, and for me to read it, and believe it, and then for me to
convince wynot to believe it.  I said that I had no control over wynot's
beliefs or behaviour, and that I thought it would be manipulative of me
to try to control him, and that was something I wouldn't do.

   I reminded him that he had said multiple times that nothing I said or
did would cause he and I to not be friends, and that now here he was,
wanting to disconnect from me, not for what I had done, but for something
a friend of ours did.  I also suggested he should be taking up this
matter with wynot directly, instead of trying to go through me.

   Essentially, I had 3 choices, to convince wynot to quit "attacking his
church", to disconnect from wynot, or for him (the co$ friend) to
disconnect from me.  And what if I didn't convince wynot to believe the
"truth" that he brought?  What then, I asked.  He said he didn't know
what step 2 was, but that the church knew how to "handle people who
attacked it".  The term "dead agenting" came up, and when I asked what
would they find to "dead agent" wynot with, I was informed that dead
agenting was something that was done to situations, not individuals.  Oh?
I asked.  He said the Lisa McPherson "material" was an example of dead
agenting a situation, and then I realized what the "truths" he wanted me
to believe were.

   I told him that if I read the "material" he brought, that I would
naturally have questions about the things I had seen contradictions of,
and that if he wanted me to fully believe it, he should sit with me while
I read it, and address the contradictions that I had seen, and help me
understand them.  He was unwilling to do this.

   This launched into a discussion of the "evil conspiracy against the
Church of Scientology", and as he spoke, he grew more forceful, so that
at times he was so mad he was spitting, and turning red.  He began
pounding the doorframes, and at that point I told him it was time to

   Some other things mentioned during the 3 hour intimidation were:

 * I asked, if they are so enabled, such superior beings, why is one
person picketing such a big deal to them?  Especially one person as
"degraded" as he says wynot is?
 * That nothing by the Sarasota Journal could be believed, since they had
already demonstrated that they were going to lie about the Church of
Scientology.  I had to ask, did he mean the St. Petersburg Times?  That's
it, he said.  (he can't even keep the lies straight anymore...)
 * That the Time Magazine suit was still in court, and hasn't been resolved.
 * That Lisa Mcpherson's blood clot came about from the broken leg she
suffered in the accident 17 days before her death.  (!!!)
 * That the paramedic who said she was walking up and down the street
after the accident was lying.
 * That there were 2 slides which hadn't been released, of tissue
samples, that proved conclusively that Lisa did not die of dehydration.
 * That the Church of Scientology is more important to him than a friend
he's had since 1975.

   More thoughts:

 * I think the whole intimidation session was planned, even down to being
on Christmas day, since it had been 19 days since the picket.
 * I think my friend is being made to "handle me", and he would have been
wiser to have kept his mouth shut about knowing the picketer.
 * I may never see my friend again, and it doesn't matter now, because
he's not my friend anymore.
 * I will NOT kowtow to the the Church of Scientology - and I do have
people watching my back.
 * It is useless to spend time trying to show a scientologist things he
doesn't want to see.
 * To someone who doesn't want to see anything except what the Church of
Scientology shows them, there is no irrefutable proof of anything.
 * At one point, unprompted, he said he would never believe anything bad
someone said about me, that he knew me too well.  I wondered if this was a
sad foreshadowing of what was to come for me...  I told him that when his
church started saying bad things about me, we would find out if that would
be true, but that he would probably be there, and I probably wouldn't.
 * As he left, I hugged him tightly for several minutes, knowing that
this would probably be the last time I saw him.  I told him that it was
he who was walking away from me, and that if he chose to come back, that
I would be here.  I meant it.

   Note for the ARSCC (wdne):

   Isn't it amazing that 20 minutes of effort on the part of one critic,
1/3 of a critic manhour, can be met with so many wasted manhours by the
co$, in an attempt to "handle those attacking the church".

1 picketer - 20 minutes
1 3-cent flyer.

15 minutes - 1 handler
15 minutes - 1 photographer
3 hours - Friend's handling of me.
5 laughers in org x 20 minutes = 100 minutes - All people in org laughing
at the picketer; 5 people is a conservative estimate, I think.

   Look how much time they've wasted over just 20 minutes of picketing!
Picketing Works!

   Note to the Church of Scientology:

Congratulations, co$.  You've won this round.  You have stolen my friend,
and replaced him with an empty shell.  But you have not successfully
handled me.  And we shall see who wins the next round...

      |\__/,|   (\
    _.|o o  |_  ) )
--(((---(((-------------| ethercat |------------ (ascii art by Mike Rosulek)

For other parts of this story, please see:
Disconnected! after 23 years of friendship
To a lost friend...
Disconnection Letter