Archive Message - 1995

Since some of the materials which describe the $cientology cult could be considered to be copywritten materials, I have censored myself and The Skeptic Tank by deleting any and all possible text files which describes the cult's hidden mythologies. I have elected to quote just a bit of the questionable text according to the "Fair Use" legal findings afforded to those who report. - Fredric L. Rice, The Skeptic Tank, 09/Sep/95 -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=- From!!!sun4nl!xs4all!!not-for-mail Mon Jul 10 17:01:30 1995 Path:!!!sun4nl!xs4all!!not-for-mail From: nobody@REPLAY.COM (Anonymous) Newsgroups: alt.religion.scientology Subject: Big Suprise - France Date: 7 Jul 1995 15:27:24 +0200 Organization: RePLaY aND CoMPaNY UnLimited Lines: 80 Sender: Message-ID: <3tjcns$> NNTP-Posting-Host: Content-Type: text Content-Length: 3460 XComm: Replay may or may not approve of the content of this posting XComm: Report misuse of this automated service to <postmaster@REPLAY.COM> European governments balk at anti-sect laws Agence France Presse October 06, 1994 17:34 GMT European governments have balked at enacting anti-sect legislation that could have prevented mass deaths like that of 48 members of a doomsday sect in Switzerland, despite pressure from churches and other groups. The dead were found Wednesday in a Swiss farmhouse in Cheiry and in two remote chalets in Granges-sur-Salvan. It was a macabre tragedy in the bucolic Swiss countryside that horrified local people who had never heard of the sect known variously as the Solar Tradition Order of the Order of the Solar Temple. Thousands of miles away, two other bodies were found in Quebec, in a house owned by the leader of the cult after the building was destroyed by a fire. Dozens of such groups operate quietly across Europe, often without legal status or restraints on their activities. In France, experts who document cults say there are about 200 sects that have attracted some 100,000 members, mostly aged under 30. The Order of the Solar Temple is among them, with several "clubs" across the country. Others, like the Church of Scientology and the Unification Church, whose members are dubbed "Moonies," have had run-ins with French courts, but are generally guaranteed freedom of expression and allowed to recruit as they wish, provided they register as non-profit organizations. In December 1993, the French National Consultative Commission on Human Rights opposed passing specific legislation on sects, saying common law already covered any infringement of human rights. This left laws on the corruption of minors as the only recourse for those seeking to fight sects or their activities in court. Belgium is estimated to have some 50 sects which also operate legally under the status of non-profit organizations, according to the Belgian Association for the Defense of Individuals and Families. That watchdog group, set up in 1976, said the sects systematically "violate Belgian laws as well as the European Convention on Human Rights and that on children's rights." But they apparently have rarely been tested in court. In Britain, a government-financed research group at the London School of Economics called Inform was set up in 1988 to study the problem, but has ushered in no legislation. In Spain, about 200,000 people belong to sects, according to Jose Rodriguez, an academic and author of two books on the subject. However Spanish experts and anti-sect groups claim it would be dangerous and ineffective to bring in special laws against them and instead favour preventive monitoring of young people and de-programming schemes. In Sweden, it is difficult to crack down on sects because freedom of religion is enshrined in the constitution, a justice ministry spokesman said. Police have intervened only three times in the past few years and may do so only when crimes like rape and tax fraud are suspected. Germany also has no laws against such groups, but police believe that about 700 to 750 of them exist, with a total of some two million members. The "Natural Law Party" -- which has branches in other European countries and organizes levitation sessions at news conferences -- is contesting the October 16 legislative elections in Germany. Police believe it to be a branch of the guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi's transcendental meditation movement, which is considered to be a dangerous sect.


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