The following is taken from the June 24, 2006 St. Petersburg Times story “The Unperson, Scientologists who cross their religion can be declared suppressive persons, shunned by peers and ostracized by family.”
The suppressive persons who spoke to the Times were declared SPs because they publicly and repeatedly challenged the church. They also faced the church’s regimented internal justice system.
The process typically begins with a Scientologist writing a “knowledge report” about another church member, outlining alleged transgressions. The accused may be directed to undergo ethics counseling or ordered to face a “committee of evidence,” a tribunal of church staff members who, acting as jurors, determine if the person has committed suppressive acts.
Suppressive acts must be renounced, and suppressive persons must atone. Failing to comply carries heavy consequences, as Randy Payne discovered.
He expanded his Clearwater private school, Lighthouse, which incorporated L. Ron Hubbard’s study techniques, and opened sister schools in Scientology’s target markets of Hungary, the Czech Republic and Italy.
To use Hubbard’s “tech” and materials, Payne agreed to pay 10 percent of his schools’ revenues. He paid the fee initially, but stopped in 1997 because he said his curriculum had evolved to a point where Hubbard’s techniques were used only marginally.
The church threatened to declare him an SP.
“It’s the ultimate weapon for them because no one can talk to you,” Payne said.
He pleaded his case through four committees of evidence — two held in Clearwater, two in Los Angeles. He formally was declared a suppressive person on May 11, 2003. The order said Payne “spread false and derogatory statements to others about Scientology and Church staff.”
Scientology agents sought to cut off Payne’s ties to the church community. A church ethics officer told an employee at Payne’s school that he needed to quit, according to a note the employee wrote to Payne. Church staffers informed Payne’s students who were Scientologists that Payne had been declared and that they should leave the school, he said.
The suppressive person policy was used against him as a form of extortion, Payne said, to get him to pay the fees.
He wrote legislators and met with law enforcement officials, asking they investigate his claim of extortion.
Last October, Payne made a more public protest that could happen only in Clearwater. During the opening moments of a Clearwater City Council meeting, when residents typically complain about parking problems and potholes, Payne stood and with TV cameras recording his every word, complained about the Church of Scientology:
“It is my belief that this church’s leadership has created a corrupt internal justice system to enforce its money-making scheme on individuals and businesses.”
Council members sat mute.
When it comes to being mean Scientology has plenty to pass around. They serve cruelties to all comers at all hours of the day and night. They are however, even-handed about it, they will persecute their own just a quickly as outsiders. To read the full story go here: