Education Letter to the Editor

Scientology-Linked Ad Draws Reader’s Questions

September 25, 2007 1 min read

To the Editor:

In your Sept. 5, 2007, issue, you printed an appalling advertisement from a group calling itself the Citizens Commission on Human Rights. The text lurches from hysterical complaints about medications for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, to inaccurate statements about diagnosis, to an attack on psychiatry.

Found on the organization’s Web site is this tantalizing note: “The Citizens Commission on Human Rights is an international psychiatric watchdog group co-founded in 1969 by the Church of Scientology and Dr. Thomas Szasz, Professor of Psychiatry Emeritus, to investigate and expose psychiatric violations of human rights.”

I wonder if this remarkable lapse in judgment represents a particular policy in regard to advertising messages in Education Week—should we expect more ridiculous, absurd, unsubstantiated, and wildly inaccurate claims from Scientology front groups?

I’m disappointed in your decision to run this ad. I don’t mind a religious organization representing itself honestly, whether I agree with its premises and practices or not. I strongly object to the dishonesty and misrepresentation shown by a quasi-religious cult.

Stephen Rosenmeier

Afton, Minn.

A version of this article appeared in the September 26, 2007 edition of Education Week as Scientology-Linked Ad Draws Reader’s Questions