“Anonymous” pickets Scientology HQ in Hollywood*

It’s begun.

http://blogging.la/archives/images/2008/02/panosci-thumb.jpg
As promised three weeks ago, more than 200 people with signs, many in masks, are massed right now outside the Scientology mothership in Hollywood, protesting against the COS.

Chants of “We are Anonymous!”, signs proclaiming, “Scientology kills!”, black bandannas and V-for-Vendetta masks seem to be the order of the day, though there were a few hockey and politician masks in the mix too …

Half a dozen LAPD cruisers are parked on the opposite side of the street, but everything seems peaceful so far. No sign of an opposing army of blue-clad Scientologists with video cameras, either. (Note – I made a quick pass with a camera while out on errands).

Apparently, other protests are hitting Scientology centers around the world, according to the video press release, which lays out a pretty heavy array of accusations against what it calls a “criminal organization.”

It appears from the at least one Anonymous project’s wiki, that the movement now has a name:

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Project Chanology is a large scale plan to bring down the Church of Scientology in its present form. On January 16, 2008; Anonymous decided to spread the message that Scientology is a dangerous and suppressive organization. We are doing this for the ex-Scientologists dare not speak up in fear of the cult, for the innocent members who are frauded out of their savings and broken down mentally, for those who have lost a relative or friend to the cult and for those who have already lost their lives.

Had to race back here to post this, so I’m not sure what the situation’s like right now.

But you gotta wonder, as some in the “church” are probably doing right now – what would be the reaction of police, pastors or populace if this was taking place in front of a real mosque, synagogue or church this morning?

Post links to your photos and coverage in comments below. http://blogging.la/archives/images/2008/02/maskcam-thumb.jpg

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http://blogging.la/archives/images/2008/02/xenu-thumb.jpg.

More coverage of protests in Toronto, Detroit, Boston, etc. via Technorati

UPDATE: Sean’s prepping dozens of photos and a markedly different view of the protest, due here shortly. Stay tuned.
Here’s Sean Bonner’s take, with more photos.

27 Replies to ““Anonymous” pickets Scientology HQ in Hollywood*”

  1. “But you gotta wonder, as some in the “church” are probably doing right now – what would be the reaction of police, pastors or populace if this was taking place in front of a real mosque, synagogue or church this morning?” Exactly the point.

  2. And once again the religious bigots come out of the woodwork! These people are criminals and should be treated as such.

    Looks like Germany circa 1930 all over again!

  3. Thank you, Boris! Just because you don’t understand a religion that doesn’t give you the right to abuse their church’s First Amendment rights.

    I hope the LAPD busts these bigots.

  4. And Mack, I hope you got pictures of some of these cyber terrorists without their masks on! I, for one, would like to know who these cowards really are!

  5. @ A Friend:

    Right; so the Church has the ability to be granted first amendment rights, but the protesters don’t. Do you have any idea how government works in the United States, or are you just talking out of your ass?

    Every single “bigot” today was completely peaceful and not violent in any fashion, yet the church came out multiple times with physical violence, some of which were removed by your *gasp* victorious LAPD and other law enforcement officers.

    Practice what you preach, retard.

  6. @Boris/A Friend-

    I’m sorry, but you really need to do your research. This is not a protest against the religion called Scientology. People are allowed to believe what they want, even if it is L Ron’s sci-fi bunk–that’s their right as a human being, and Anonymous is recognizing that. This is a protest against the corrupt, criminal cult and corporate entity called the “Church” of Scientology. The CoS splits families apart, deceives its own followers, personally harasses critics, and is linked to some very suspicious deaths (Google: Lisa McPherson–it’s her birthday today, hence the date of the protests).

    Educate yourself, please. This is not bigotry, this is not hate speech, this is a protest against an insidious and criminal organization.

  7. “I, for one, would like to know who these cowards really are!”

    Tough talk from the guy who is too much of a pansy to use his name and just goes by the anonymous logo of “a friend”. I’d love to see your e-thug lifestyle go down right in front of all of those protesters, especially when you provoke violence right in front of law enforcement officers.

    Granted, you’re more bigoted than any of these peaceful people who genuinely stand up for what they believe in, but whatever. Keep telling yourself you’re doing the right thing; I find it difficult to believe you ever leave your parent’s basement, regardless.

  8. People can believe whatever they want, the protests are aimed at the criminal organisation organisation calling itself the Church of Scientology, not the people. I know there were Free Zone scientologists at the London protest protesting along with anonymous, one Free Zoner saying “the actual members of Anonymous were extremely Freezone friendly, even at one time chanting ” FREEZONE FREEZONE FREEZONE.” I talked to around a couple of dozen people, most of whom approached me asking if I was a Freezoner, and asking lots of questions about the freezone.”. That’s from forum.exscn.net/showthread.php?t=3861 if you want to read the rest of it.

  9. Amendment–Boris, I misread the posts, and assumed you were posting what was BELOW you. My apologies, my earlier statement is targeted solely at “A Friend” then.

  10. Jack: “This is not a protest against the religion called Scientology.”

    While you may be genuine in your belief, I don’t think the protesters on the whole are distinguishing this at all.

    They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.

  11. To those of you who would say that we should not be criticizing a religion because of the First Amendment, I say that you should research a bit about Scientology.

    Search Wikipedia for Operation Snow White, and for Lisa McPherson. Look at http://www.xenu.net. After you have informed yourself, feel free to disagree with us.

  12. David Markland: I wasn’t at the protests; I’d intended to go to the Minneapolis one but wound up sick as a dog so had to pass. I think though, that there’s a difference between that and actively protesting a person’s right to believe in Scientology. Making fun of the Xenu story is sort of mainstream–South Park did it, Futurama did it (in a single shot, admittedly), it’s almost trendy. Personally, I find it absolutely ridiculous and can’t comprehend that people believe it.

    However, just because I personally can’t understand why someone would believe it doesn’t mean that for a single SECOND I protest someone’s right to believe it or to think what they want. And that, I feel, is the difference between “Hail Xenu” signs and outright religious bigotry–Anonymous’ press releases have constantly said that they are not attacking individual Scientologists, nor are they attacking their right to believe what they want.

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=SQKbHBqDwSI lays it out fairly comprehensively, I feel.

    ARE their individual protesters who might feel that way? Sure, there are a lot of them. But Anonymous as a whole does not.

  13. “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.”

    Wrong – Xenu is not the “God” of Scientology. He is in fact kind of their enemy. Mocking Xenu is in no way mocking the serious beliefs of those poor brainwashed fools duped by the ILLEGAL (in several countries including Canada and the UK) PYRAMID SCHEME CULT that is scientology.

    By the way – I quit the Church. Me and Katie are now catholics.

  14. David Markland said: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.”

    Er… no it isn’t. I suggest you research scientology before you make any more ill-informed comments like that. I was at one of the UK protests (Manchester, there were about 150 people) and I observed quite a few conversations between members of the public and protesters as well has having a few myself, and we always made it clear we weren’t attacking anyone’s religious freedom. In my opinion the reason Xenu’s name is used quite a lot is because it’s from one of the doctrines of scientology that they keep very secret. Members don’t even learn the Xenu story until they’re OT3 (by which point they’ve “donated” around $160,000 to the church or worked for a long time for almost no money), with it being strictly forbidden to read anything about Xenu before you reach that level (i.e. so you can’t get the info for free).

  15. David Markland said: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.”

    Actually, this should have read: “David Markland said: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Darth Vader or Ming the Merciless.”

    I’m sure David regrets the error.

  16. David Markland said: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.”

    Actually, this should have read: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Darth Vader or Ming the Merciless.”

    I’m sure David regrets the error.

  17. LMAO…re “Tom Cruise” quit the church and is now a catholic.

    After reading all of this I am at a loss for words. All that comes to mind is…all this will accomplish what?

  18. This has been a great day!

    I would like to see anonymous hone in on the issue of child abuse/slavery in their camps/schools and in the sea org. And the way they turn children against non-scientology divorced parents.

    Google astra woodcraft, as an example. She tells the same story as Jenna Miscavige Hill. Check out the other stories of childhood in scientology on xenutv.

    This is an issue which can and should get some traction with the public.

    Why are child protective services in the California and Florida doing anything about this–as well as in the UK (St. Hill).

    The FBI should also be looking into it…it is not legal the way they work these kids and deprive them of school and family.

  19. David Markland said: “They’re making fun of Xenu, to begin with, which is really no different than mocking Mohammad or Jesus.”

    Wha? Making fun of people is against the law in the U.S.? What’s South Park going to do for material?

    If I want to make fun of Benjamin Franklin or Albert Einstein or Mohammad or someone alleged to have lived 2000 years ago and who some today call Jesus, I damn well have the right to. I don’t even know what or who Xenu is, but if someone’s telling me I can’t make fun of him/her/it, I’m going to start learning why I should.

  20. Vitamins don’t cure schizophrenia! Power to the people!! Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!!! FREE THE CHILDREN!!!!

  21. The “where’s your xenu now?” and “wwxd” signs are actually completely ignorant. Xenu is a theoretical alien tyrant in the Scientology doctrine who apparently enslaved and murdered millions of humans. He is not worshiped, loved, or revered as a savior.

    Not that I’m defending them, I think it’s all laughable, really. Just thought you all might like to sound a little bit more intelligent about the topic in the future :-)

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