Scientology Crime Syndicate

11 Dec 2000

German_Scn_News <german_scn_news@hotmail.com>

From: wake_up_sharky@my-deja.com
Newsgroups: de.soc.weltanschauung.scientology
Subject: Clearwater 2000 - Tag 2
Date: Fri, 08 Dec 2000 21:53:51 GMT

We left the hotel about 9:30 to make our way to FH. Funny, this year there did not appear to be any PI's following us, either that or they were considerably better disguised than last year ...

The day before we made ourselves new picket signs. In consideration of what I had seen in the last few months - on more than one occasion - I had let a gifted calligrapher from Austria :-) draw me up a sign that said, "Scientology policies break up families." But that day, unfortunately, that sign couldn't be found anywhere. At the LMT they said it was in the van, and at the van we were told it would be at the Trust. It was a shame, but no problem, since Frank had set up a picket sign factory in the van in back of FH. He put together materials which had been prepared in advance according to preference. A few months ago I had the idea to draw signs in the shape and color of a stop sign, and Rod came up with potential texts. Frank put it together. They turned out really well, and some of them had http://www.parishioner.org/picket/ on one side. Frank had put other signs together, including DM's head which Arnie put on a pike, also a life-size photo of DM - which barely came up to my shoulder :-))))).

The court order permitted demonstrating directly across from the FH on the side of the Super Power building (it actually grew a little from last year ...). The sidewalk there still had the overhang from last year, but it was not covered with green cloth this time. In front of the overhang on the street side, most of the surface had been poured in concrete already, but there were also spots with grass. Those areas, according to the police, were in different legal categories. For instance there was grass which could not be walked on and there was grass which could be walked on. So a picketer was posted in front of the "illegal" grass to keep us from walking on it ... - oh, well, what can ya do ....

The space we had was a little skimpy since we had to keep moving and about 50 picketers were milling about and bumping signs. Therefore I decided to alternate sides and swung back and forth between the Presbyterian Church and the Clearwater Bank building. In doing that I was practically in the middle of an arrest where several police dragged a young man out of a car and led him off. As it turned out, that had nothing at all to do with our demonstration. Somebody who asked the police found out that the car had been reported as stolen. Despite that I thought it'd be better not to get so far from the other picketers, you never know .....

Shortly after that there was a second arrest. A young guy walked by the main entrance to the FH and yelled out "fuck you" and something like "if you don't believe in Christmas, you don't believe in God." He was quickly overpowered by several policemen, put up against the wall and led away in handcuffs. Right after that a policeman came over to "our" side and threatened to arrest a picketer who interfered with the arrest by yelling out. They didn't do anything more than that though, since they were already familiar with the man they arrested and knew that he was not one of us.

At the end of the overhang Grady Ward set up a stereo and played songs like "We will, we will rock you." At which point a line of dancing girls :-)) formed in front of him and took turns moving with the music. Fun!!!!!!

While we were walking up and down we also tried to recognize what was behind the FH windows. Right around the middle of the building 4 or 5 floors up was a girl with a book in her hand by the window looking down at us. We waved to her and some blew her a kiss - and she waved back. I could hardly believe it! It went that way for a long time, then she disappeared. My conscience really bothered me after that, because, of course the Scientologists would have seen us looking in her direction and waving at her. I was afraid she got in trouble. But after a while she showed up again, this time with another girl. Gawd, was I relieved ...

Tory Bezazian wore red devil's horns for the whole demo and, together with Arnie, rolled up some cardboard into a megaphone. All the better to be heard with :-))

There were several TV stations and newspaper reporters and there were the usual interviews. We took turns going to lunch in small groups to "Emilie's." I recommend the Athenian Salad, it's great!

After picketing we drove back to the hotel to get ready for the candlelight services. This year Rod Keller and I sponsored a wreath, which was really flowers tied together, and we still had to pick it up. Since Jeff's car is relatively small and the wreath was fastened to a rack, we didn't know how we were going to carry it at first. Finally we squeezed it in with Rod in the front seat, who had to spend the rest of the ride with flowers in his face. Good thing he doesn't have hay fever :-))))

At the candlelight services, as every year, Lisa's relatives were there. We gathered in front of the Presbyterian Church and, after a short introduction from Gregg Hagglund, lit our candles. It had been planned for Stacy to carry the flowers, but she was still recovering from her operation, so Ilse stood in for her (Thanks, Ilse). Stacy eventually took the flowers, though, and was supported by Dell Leibreich, Lisa's aunt.

Our procession went behind the FH, where the wreath was put near Lisa's room. Gregg said a prayer, an abridged version of Thomas Gandow's, then we went by the wreath one at a time, blew out our candles and set them there. Many had tears in their eyes. I looked at Sally and Ed Lottik, who lost their son to Scientology, and asked myself how they must be feeling. Even though we were doing all this in Lisa's name, actually we were standing there for all the victims, for all the suffering of innumerable members and families. I went over to Sally and hugged her.

During this service two OSA (?) people were standing only five yards from us, filming us the whole time. Gregg (and he was not the only one) was therefore rather upset and told them that their behavior was irreverent and gruesome, and I thought he was right. It was right at that moment that the true face of Scientology could be seen clearly and unmistakably. Lisa's uncle, whose birthday it was that day, was being filmed quite close up when he was talking with a policeman. He looked directly into the camera and said, "I love you, too." Hard to more vividly demonstrate the difference between Scientology and its opponents than that.

After the service we all had a wonderful dinner together at Ottavio's and later drove back to the hotel. We would have liked to have spent some time in the bar, but they had already closed. So about 15 of us got together to go to a nearby bar. It was late when we got back to the hotel, but not too late. We had another picket day ahead of us.

To be continued ....



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