Conference held in Clearwater challenges Church of Scientology
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05/05/14 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Monday) | Listen to this entire show:
Tags: Flag Down 2014, Church of Scientology, Pete Griffiths, Chris Shelton, John Sweeney

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John Sweeney, Chris Shelton, Pete Griffiths


Today on Radioactivity, we get a preview of a five day conference that begins today in Tampa Bay. The conference is designed to challenge the Church of Scientology and organizers say the conference, Flag Down 2014 will reveal the abusive conditions, financial exploitation, coerced abortions and broken families that lie behind the Scientology organization's veneer of religiosity.

Rob Lorei speaks to Pete Griffiths who was a member of the Church of Scientology for more than 20 years and one of the organizers of the conference. He also speaks with John Sweeney, author of The Church of Fear and a BBC reporter and Chris Shelton who spent 25 years in the church.

Three years ago-- we featured an interview with Janet Reitman, author of a new book called Inside Scientology. Reitman describes the book as the first objective book on Scientology. It describes a church with fewer members than what church officials proclaim. It describes an autocratic ruler in charge of the church, David Miscavage who is allegedly obsessed with money, the sexual lives of his parishioners and who has occasionally been violent toward to staffers. The church is described in the book as obsessively secret and which is especially punitive toward dissenters and ex members. The Church asked for time to respond and we did an hour long program with Pat Harney who is the public affairs director of the Church of Scientology. You can listen to that program here.

Flag Down 2014 will begin at 18:30 (EDT) on Monday May 5th at the Minnreg Hall, 6340 126th Ave N in Largo. Clearwater is home to the "Flag Land Base", which has long been claimed by Scientology as its "spiritual headquarters" in the face of local residents' opposition.

Clearwater, Florida, April 8th 2014 – Award-winning British journalist John Sweeney will speak at May's anti-Scientology conference, "Flag Down 2014". This 5-day conference will reveal the abusive conditions, financial exploitation, coerced abortions and broken families that lie behind the Scientology organization's veneer of religiosity.

The press conference will be held in the Florida city of Clearwater, home of the "Flag Land Base", which has long been claimed by Scientology as its "spiritual headquarters" in the face of local residents' opposition. It begins at 18:00 (EST) on Monday, May 5th and subsequent days, and will also incorporate a Q&A session and individual interviews.

One of the speakers at the conference will be the grandson of the founder of Scientology- Jamie DeWolf- great grandson of L. Ron Hubbard. Watch this video below:

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