Thursday, June 30, 2005

Kevin Drum at Washington Monthly has some fascinating background to add to the news story about Tom Cruise denying that mental illness is a result of a chemical imbalance in the brain and asserting that, of course, there are aliens. In a posting titled "TOM CRUISE'S DANGEROUS CLOWN SHOW" Drum begins by quoting, then proceeds to nail Scientology:
Hollywood actor Tom Cruise not only battles creatures from outer space in his latest film "War of the Worlds", he also believes aliens exist, he told a German newspaper on Wednesday.
Asked in an interview with the tabloid daily Bild if he believed in aliens, Cruise said: "Yes, of course. Are you really so arrogant as to believe we are alone in this universe?
....Many scientologists feel they are unfairly criticized, arguing that although many believe in the concept of aliens, it is not such an unreasonable proposition.

I'm actually getting a little tired of Cruise — and Scientology — being treated as some kind of cutesy human interest story. If someone wants to really interview Cruise about space aliens they should ask him a few questions like these:
Mr. Cruise, do you believe that 75 million years ago an evil galactic ruler named Xenu deposited trillions of paralyzed alien bodies on earth and then destroyed them with H-bombs?
Mr Cruise, do you believe that the souls of these creatures, known as "thetans," inhabit the bodies of present day humans?
Mr. Cruise, do you believe that "clearing" our bodies of these thetans is the key to mental stability? Is that the reason Scientologists believe that psychiatry and antidepressive drugs are damaging and unnecessary?
This is crackpot stuff, and there's plenty more available on the internet about Scientology and the origins of its decades long crusade against the mental health profession — all accessible with a few minutes of googling to any reporter willing to take the trouble. If the media stopped treating this like a bit of chuckleheaded fun and asked Cruise some real questions, Americans might be a wee bit less tolerant of his dangerous and dishonest clown show.


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