2 Responses

  1. “Catherine Wessinger (Loyola University New Orleans) has stated that the word “cult” represents just as much prejudice and antagonism as racial slurs or derogatory words for women and homosexuals.[48] She has argued that it is important for people to become aware of the bigotry conveyed by the word, drawing attention to the way it dehumanises the group’s members and their children.[48] Labeling a group as subhuman, she says, becomes a justification for violence against it.[48] At the same time, she adds, labeling a group a “cult” makes people feel safe, because the “violence associated with religion is split off from conventional religions, projected onto others, and imagined to involve only aberrant groups.”[48] This fails to take into account that child abuse, sexual abuse, financial extortion and warfare have also been committed by believers of mainstream religions, but the pejorative “cult” stereotype makes it easier to avoid confronting this uncomfortable fact.”

    The Roman Catholic church is the biggest cult operating in Eire, brainwashing sheeple from birth to death and conning them into parting with their hard earned money. The men in dresses pretend to talk to “god” and hear his voice. And when that voice says kill in my name, the sheeple do it. This cult has operated in ireland for thousands of years now and used torture, murder, fear etc to “convert” people to its death cult.
    Howver, it now uses the above word cult to deflect attention from itself and its past and present.

    According to HSE agents, you can be a cult of One person- simply by leaving the Catholic cult- and you can loose your children to the fostering business for this.
    Who said the dark ages were over?

    Like

  2. I sent this letter to TV3 which sums up my opinion on this piece:

    To the producer(s) of Midweek,

    I watched, with some consternation I might add, the Wednesday night edition of Midweek programme which dealt with the topic of cults. While you and your staff may have had the best intentions to inform your viewers about the effect cults can have, I fear that your programme may have proved counter-productive in that effort. Allow me to explain why I think this with reference to the cultic group I am most familiar – namely Scientology.

    The description given of Scientology by your show was so far removed and so detached from what prospective members would encounter that it would be unrecognisable to those prospective members. It is unfortunate that such gross misrepresentations can be used by Scientology recruiters to brand such shows like Midweek as ignorant and full of lies. Spiel about ‘super powers’ and ‘out of body experiences’ (known as exteriorisation in Scientology jargon) would only be encountered by Scientologists AFTER they had spent hundreds of thousands of euro. By presenting such a skewed description in your show you have actually made your viewers more susceptible to Scientology recruitment.

    To emphasise the preceding point, let me describe to you some of my experiences. Since January 2008 I have been actively involved in campaigning to raise awareness of the dangers of Scientology. This has involved picketing outside any locations Scientology attempts recruitment, which has included outside Cork City Hall during the Mind Body Spirit festivals that are held bi-annually there. During those events Scientology recruit under the banners of CCHR (Citizens Commission on Human Rights) and Dianetics. It astounds me how often members of the public would be unaware that those groups are Scientology, but it astounds me even more that some members of the public failed to recognise them simply because those groups did not talk about aliens and super powers and all the other widespread stereotypes the public have regarding Scientology. Your programme, by reinforcing such stereotypes, has done a disservice to your viewers.

    On a more general level your show also helped reinforce widespread misconceptions of what a cult is. All too often people get caught up in cultic groups only to rationalise their involvement by delineating their group from the mistaken concept of what they believe a cult to be. Perpetrating these stereotypes provide these rationalisations, not to mention that such portrayals hold little value in equipping people with the knowledge needed to actually recognise cultic tendencies.

    While the above has certainly left me aghast, my final comment is the one that pains me most dearly. For a show that was introduced supposedly under the guise of informing the public you neglected to provide the public with sufficient contact details to easily allow them to find more information or to seek assistance if so needed. A brief mention of Rise International while displaying a very long hard to read url simply fails in that endeavour, and indeed would be missed by members of the public unfamiliar with the organisation in question. The Irish organisation in this field wasn’t even mentioned.

    The reason I wrote this message was not to rant or to let off steam. I wrote this message because, as I have described above, I believe that presenting misleading and inaccurate information does a disservice to the viewer and, as also described above, may even increase their vulnerability to cultic recruitment. While I admired greatly the courage and detailed testimony provided by Juliana Buhring on your show, I feel that by portraying all cultic groups in the same stereotyped vein you have left the viewer less informed about what a cult actually is.

    I do hope you will considering doing more programming on this issue, and I also hope that you will consider what I have written here. Given the seriousness of this issue and the potential impact your programme could have in preventing/saving a person from a life of cultic suffering I hope you will give due thought to how you construct your programming in the future.

    With hope,

    Like

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: